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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A Vitriolic Angels Preview

If you haven't seen it already, Mat Gleason's 2011 Angels preview is up at Hardball Times, and a bitter, invective-laden rant it is. It's hard to argue against it; the Angels made a bad trade (Vernon Wells) to make up for not getting Carl Crawford, costing the Angels their best offensive weapon. The Kazmir deal is a catastrophe. Mike Scioscia's nearly unrestrained hand appears, at the moment, to be paying negative dividends. The most interesting part is his analysis of the timing of former scouting director Eddie Bane's firing:
The timing would indicate that there was no thought about it until someone had to go to save Reagins' CEO ego. If Reagins was upset with Bane’s 2010 draft, there was nothing prior to it to indicate that the Bane cowboy strategy of drafting high-risk, high-reward toolsy high schoolers early and often was going to change; Reagins could have made his move at any time prior. He waits, gets exactly what Bane has been cooking up for years and then fires him for that? Sure, probably, but we will never know because of the corporate culture of silence. You don’t have to look too far beyond the 2009 dismissal of LAA’s Latin American scouting director Clay Daniel for allegations that his scouts “down there” were skimming to find a reason to dismiss Bane. But again, if you don’t like his drafts and the skimming scandal happens on his watch, you replace Bane after 2009. To leave Bane in his position after such a scandal, as Reagins did, only to sacrifice the scouting director as some sort of scapegoat a year and 80 wins later, is only going to make the end of the Sigma Reagins front office frat-house culture of Anaheim all the more joyous for fans who deserve better.

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