Monday, September 22, 2008
How To Win Postseason Home Field Advantage Without Really Trying: Angels 2, Mariners 1
The difference in this game was the outfield screwup between Raul Ibanez and Mariners center fielder Jeremy Reed; both were late getting the ball in, and as a consequence, Reggie Willits' single cashed in catcher (yes, it needs emphasizing) Jeff Mathis from first. Upon championships are such trivialities built. Willits went 3-for-4, his best day in a long, long time, and a wonderful thing to see him back like that.
Vlad homered, the Angels' only other run in the contest. Ervin Santana limited the M's to a single run through eight, and Frankie nailed down the ninth without too much fuss.
The Angels got their 97th win to make a winner of Ervin Santana, while the Mariners took their 99th loss; let us give credit along the way to Ryan Rowland-Smith, who pitched well, got the L, but will probably be in the Seattle rotation come next year.
One final point: the Halos clinched home field advantage over Boston tonight.
Truly one of those infrequent situations in which a win-lose scenario is actually a win-win.
Not conclusiveley, but i'd think him faster than half the guys on the team, maybe the league.
Now if it was Napoli running, that'd be worth mentioning, but the key point as you mention was the outfield error.