Wednesday, July 16, 2008
Brian Kamenetzky On The Angels At The ASB
It’s not that the Angels aren’t a good team. They are. Very good, actually, if only because they rarely give anything away, forcing the opposition to beat them. But at this point, with the Angels comfortably ahead in the AL West, being chased by an Oakland team that doesn’t seem to be pushing for a title this year (see Harden, Rich), the question really centers around whether the Angels are good enough to outpitch and outscore teams in the playoffs. The former isn’t that big of a problem- the Halos have a killer rotation, and a solid pen backed by one of the game’s best closers- but as it seems to always be at this point of the year, the latter is a question mark.The 2009 Angels are poised to be a real problem offensively, with Vlad questionable along with the whole outfield, and Casey Kotchman seeming to settle into something less than a more powerful Mark Grace, with declining pop and OBP. Chone Figgins will be another year older, and his is a skill set that won't likely age well. Add up the offensive zeros behind the plate and of a sudden the Angels become a serious non-threat to even contend if their pitching depth becomes an issue — which it has already been this year.
Offensively, the Angels are something of a Jekyll and Hyde act. In April the Angels were one of baseball’s more productive offensive teams. In May and June, however, they scored only 201 runs. That’s only six more than the Dodgers managed over the same period of time. Yes, the Angels played one less game, but to be in the same ballpark as the Dodgers in anything related to plate performance is a very bad thing.
Isn't it one-dimensional sluggers who don't age well, while defensively ambidextrous speedsters defy Father time?