February 20th, 2013
In a battle of elite center fielders, Matt Kemp vanquished Mike Trout in the Face of MLB tournament. Kemp, one step closer to eternal glory, will now face Atlanta right fielder Jason Heyward in the semifinals. On the other side of the bracket, Andrew McCutchen awaits the winner of the Joey Votto-Derek Jeter matchup.
The loss for Trout is surprising because a number of Angels fans on my Twitter feed participated in the voting. And by participated, I mean voted upwards of 100 times. Judging by that, I thought Trout would win in a walk through, but obviously the Dodgers have their own dedicated fans that also were bored at home equally invested in their player winning this great honor. I voted only once, but it appears my vote for Bob Uecker as the face of MLB fell on deaf ears.
Now, though, we must wonder how this loss will negatively impact Trout going forward. Will he lose endorsements? Almost certainly. Does Kemp steal Trout’s baseball powers now in a Space Jam-esque twist of fate? Vernon Wells would tell you that such a thing can happen.
If Trout can muster the inner strength then maybe, just maybe, he can overcome this tough defeat and play at replacement level this season. I’m not holding my breath, though.
February 19th, 2013
Today I will look at a reason Angels fans could be pessimistic about their team’s chances in the upcoming season. These aren’t necessarily apocalyptic, worst case scenarios (Pujols busted for deer antler spray and begins fawn mutation, Weaver retires and starts a garage band, etc.) but are things that could negatively impact the ball club and wouldn’t take a large stretch of the imagination. For Part 3, click here.
4) The Bullpen Might Not Really Be That Much Better
I’m of the mind that poor starting pitching was the primary reason the 2012 Angels failed to qualify for the postseason. Dan Haren, Ervin Santana and C.J. Wilson all disappointed to varying degrees, and even Jered Weaver wasn’t as great as he was the two prior seasons. Some fans like to blame Albert Pujols’ cold April, or Mike Scioscia’s oft-changing lineup card or Vernon Wells’ annoying insistence on collecting paychecks rather than saving some pride and retiring.
February 15th, 2013
How can you not vote for this face?
MLB Network is asking baseball fans to answer that very question. The Face of MLB is a contest in which fans vote on Twitter for who is face-ier in certain matchups (for bracket, click here). Now, I’m not exactly sure what being the “face” of MLB means. Does it mean that Player X has the best facial bone structure? Is the honor supposed to go to the most recognizable player? Are we supposed to vote for the player that could make the easiest transition to acting? Or is it simply the best player?
February 14th, 2013
Josh Hamilton reported to Spring Training on Tuesday 20 pounds lighter, and he claims it was all thanks to juicing. “But Andrew,” you, my dear reader, say, “won’t juicing in fact make you bigger?! Because don’t you get more muscle and stuff and muscle weighs more than fat, at least that’s what my gym coach told me in 10th grade when I couldn’t climb the rope.” Ah, but see, that’s where my deceptive headline comes into play. Master of puns, I am.
No, Hamilton reportedly shed the weight via a juice diet — you know, like fruits and vegetables blended together to make things that don’t taste as good as In-N-Out.* Hamilton, a deeply religious man, stated that the Lord woke him up in the middle of the night and drew him to infomercials featuring nutrition author Cherie Calbom. Through this, he learned the tricks of the [legal] juicing trade.
* I consider it juicing when I ask for tomatoes on my cheeseburger.
I admire Hamilton’s productivity when waking up in the middle of the night. If I wake up at some funky hour, I’ll go rummage the fridge or admire the mustache of the My Pillow guy. Anyway, the Angels hope Hamilton’s health binge will keep him healthy and productive heading into the season. It’s a common offseason joke that players are always “in the best shape of their lives.” But with Hamilton that might actually be the case. I mean, it can’t hurt, right?
If you follow the link in the first paragraph there’s a video that better explains what Cherie Calbom is all about. I didn’t watch any of it because it’s almost 30 minutes long and anything over 45 second on YouTube means I’m not watching it. But if you’re bored or want some health tips of your own, have at it. You never know, maybe you too can become a pro ball player!
February 13th, 2013
Today I will look at a reason Angels fans could be pessimistic about their team’s chances in the upcoming season. There will be five posts and they’ll be rolled out in the next week or so. These aren’t necessarily apocalyptic, worst case scenarios (Pujols busted for deer antler spray and begins fawn mutation, Weaver retires and starts a garage band, etc.) but are things that could negatively impact the ball club and wouldn’t take a large stretch of the imagination. For Part 2, click here.
3) The Angels Starting Rotation is Questionable, and That’s Being Kind
What a difference a year makes. A year ago, the Angels boasted arguably the best starting rotation in baseball on paper. They had the trio of aces in Jered Weaver, C.J. Wilson, and Dan Haren. They also had the talented enigma Ervin Santana, difficult to predict but just as dominant as the other three when he was on. Now Haren and Santana have been jettisoned out of town after struggling in 2012, Weaver and Wilson are recovering from injuries, and the rotation will have three new faces but none of them exactly inspire a ton of confidence.