January 31st, 2013
As we are now four years removed from the Angels last postseason appearance, reflecting on the Angels teams that won five division titles and a World Series Championship in the 2000s, has a very warming effect. And now is as good a time as any, as the Halos are gearing up (Hamilton, Pujols, Wilson, etc.) for a possible return to their former glory days by reaching the postseason for the first time since 2009.
In the decade beginning in 2000 and ending in 2009, the Angels were perhaps one of the most successful organizations in all of baseball. During that 10-year span, the Angels went 900-720 with a .556 winning percentage while reaching October six times, the ALCS three times, and winning the 2002 World Series. In that span, many of the greatest Angels players of all time were active and productive. Some are even still enjoying success as Angels today (Erick Aybar, Howie Kendrick, and Jered Weaver), while players like Mike Trout and Mark Trumbo are products of the Angels excellent drafts of the 2000s.
January 31st, 2013
Ken Rosenthal tweets that the Angels have signed Bill Hall to a minor league contract. The deal includes an invite to Spring Training.
Hall appeared in 7 games with the Orioles in 2012. He posted a whopping .500 on-base percentage over just 14 plate appearances. In 370 plate appearances for Triple-A Norfolk, Hall posted a .246/.300/.430 line. Hall could compete for a utility role with the Angels; he’s appeared at second base, third base, and all three outfield spots over the past several years.
According to one scout, Hall is “more a 4A veteran player at this point. His bat speed has slowed considerably, and [he] has lost a step all around defensively.” It’s unlikely that Hall will make the big league team, but he is a veteran presence, and it’s always good to have those types of players in the organization, especially given Hall’s experience at nearly every every position.
January 29th, 2013
Several weeks ago, Hudson hypothesized a mutually beneficial trade between the Phillies and the Angels; in the deal, the Phillies received Vernon Wells and the Angels received not Vernon Wells. That was basically it.
Almost immediately after Tony Reagins’ blunder landed Wells in Angel Red two Januarys ago, many Angels fans have called for Wells’ swift departure, be it via trade, releasing him (and eating his exorbitant salary since it’s a sunk cost anyway), or putting some stamps on his forehead and seeing if the post office will just take him somewhere. I certainly fell into the “Get Rid of Vernon” camp, especially when he was taking playing time away from younger, better players like Peter Bourjos and Mark Trumbo. “He’s a veteran and he makes a lot of money” isn’t a viable excuse for playing a guy, and that, more than Wells’ paychecks, led to great frustration.
January 24th, 2013
Fear not Angels, this guy won’t be terrorizing you in 2013.
This morning the Braves and Diamondbacks finalized a deal that sent Justin Upton to Atlanta in exchange for Martin Prado, promising young pitcher Randall Delgado (bet the Braves are glad now that Ryan Dempster vetoed the Dempster-Delgado trade last July), and several prospects, according to Braves beat writer Mark Bowman.
January 21st, 2013
Erick Aybar will look to get off to a stronger start in 2013.
Happy Monday! Today we’ll take a quick look at three games that should be especially fun this coming April.