What a difference a year makes, the Angels don’t look like the team they were a year ago, they look very hungry, non-complacent and ready to reclaim what’s rightfully theirs; the American League West championship. Maybe this is exactly what he needed, being a three-time defending American League West champions may have caused them to get a little too comfortable in that position. They were lacking the drive and the hunger to succeed last year.
Maybe it was the bullpen as everyone remembers the Angels collapse started with the bullpen last year. That translated into offensive fatigue add to that the injury to Kendrys Morales in early May, and one has a recipe for disaster.
Not making the playoffs last year seemed to really affect the Angels by reinstalling hunger for success, they kept veterans that were the leaders of the club last year such as Torii Hunter, Jared Weaver, Dan Haren, and infused some youth into the team, such as Hank Conger, Mark Trumbo, and Jordan Walden. The perfect mix of leadership and youth seems to be paying off. It is this mixture of talent that has allowed the Angels to put together a five game winning streak while at the same time mollifying the great start by the Texas Rangers.
As of yesterday they were both tied for first place in the American League West, the Angels lost 7 runs to 1; everybody who follows baseball knows that teams are going to win some, and they’re going to lose some. What concerns me at this point is not the win loss record because I strongly believe that the Rangers can and will be beat, I wonder to the condition of our starting rotation, he’ll fit their reorganization of bullpen seem to work and offense seems to have found their groove without Kendrys Morales. The starting rotation however will need work, which Joel Piñeiro out with an injury, the Angels are unable at this point to really assess what the starting rotation will look like. I hope they both are able to play very soon.
It is very intriguing how the Angels have managed to construct the beginnings of a catcher controversy between Hank Conger and Jeff Mathis, according to an article in the Los Angeles Times a few days ago Mathis requested a closed-door meeting with Angels’ manager Mike Scioscia regarding his playing time, I fail to see the controversy, Hank Conger is a young, hungry, enthusiastic, power hitter that is ready to help the Angels on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball. Mathis on the other hand, has been a sub . 200 hitter, in his career granted, he is an above average defensive catcher, but Conger is equal to Mathis on the defensive side, and is clearly better on the offensive side. Jeff Mathis is a good backup catcher, he has had an opportunity to prove himself the last few years, he hasn’t, so it’s time to make room for someone I can do the job for this team.
The Angels having no glaring holes at this point, but they do need to address certain small issue before they become good eye problems. Overall, the Angels were a far cry from the team they were last year. I believe that they will do great things; although it is a long shot I do believe with a few tweaks in the problem areas this team has the talent to win the World Series. Go Angels!