Yes, I haven’t written much on the Halos lately. Not because I don’t care, far from it, it’s just that they had done nothing. That’s not entirely true, as they did hire Matt Klentak as their assistant GM. The 31 year old whiz kid was pretty much the only news the Halos made of late.
That all changed Wednesday afternoon, when the Angels sent pitcher Tyler Chatwood to the Colorado Rockies for catcher Chris Iannetta. That was Jerry DiPoto’s first deal as Angels General Manager, and I like it.
I know the contingent of Jeff Mathis fans won’t like it one bit. They will point out that Mathis catcher ERA (CERA), in 2011, was 3.28, while Iannetta’s was 4.23. I will point out that Mathis is the better receiver, but Iannetta is the better hitter, and will be made a better catcher (hopefully) by Mike Scioscia. With the bat, it’s no contest. Taking away Iannetta’s crappy 2009 season, when he hit .197, he has never hit lower than .218. .218 is nothing to write home about, but it is better than what the Angels received, in 2011, from their catchers.
Last year alone, Iannetta hit .238, with 14 bombs and 55 RBI’s. He also walked 70 times. In almost the same amount of games, Mathis hit .174, with 3 home runs, and 22 RBI. He walked a paltry 15 times. Yes, the team may sacrifice a bit in ERA, but they should more than make it up with the stick.
It’s too bad the Angels didn’t have a guy who could hit for average, plus knock the ball out of the park, as well. Oh, they did, his name was Mike Napoli. Just think, if the Angels didn’t deal Napoli than you wouldn’t have been able to enjoy Vernon Wells. I digress though.
Sorry to see Chatwood go. He saved the Angels bacon many times in the first half of last season. He has a real bright future ahead of him. All told, Chatwood won 6 games in a Halo uniform with an ERA close to 5. I think his stats got worse when he started to tire late in the season. He went 5-5 with a 3.62 ERA before the All-Star break, and 1-6 with a 7.46 ERA after.
I think age and maturity will clean up Chatwood’s control issues. 75 walks in 142 IP is not good, but watch those numbers come down in season’s to come.
One thing not in the Angels favor is Major League service time. Chatwood wouldn’t be a free agent until after the 2016 season. I believe, If I did the math right, Iannetta could leave as soon as 2012 season completes. It could be 2013. Either way, the Halos better hope Hank Conger is ready for full-time duty by then.
What’s up next for DiPoto? Could CJ Wilson be a new Halo addition? Not at 100-million he won’t. Could Aramis Ramirez fill the gaping hole at 3rd? That seems more reasonable. I count on DiPoto making more moves before pitchers and catchers report in just over 2 months.
As for Klentak. He made Dartmouth proud.
About the Author
Written by Bill Mahoney
O'kay I'll talk about myself a little. I've been working in the television/radio industry for over 21 years. I started at 2 so I am just a tad over 21 (That is a joke). My career has taken me around and and even out of the United States. Right now I call Vegas home, but I just never know where life will take me next. Until 2002 my irrational love for the California/Anaheim/LAA had taken me down some very dark roads, but with Arte Moreno in charge I finally saw the a light at the end of the road. I really love most every sports and having as much fun as possible.