If there's anything I'm known for on LA Angels Insider, it's three things and they're fairly set in stone. First, there's the fact that my articles take forever to appear, like Ernesto Frieri when Mark Lowe is pitching to some team's All-Star or a marginal big leaguer that the Angels are somehow unable to get out. That happens for a million reasons including the biggest one, the fact that I'm 23 years old and I never really liked to do my homework. Homework is just lame, can we all admit that, finally?
The second and third aren't huge faults, they're just the fact that I love sabermetrics/advanced statistics and the last is that I've got the weirdest twitter account north of Kevin Lappin's worldwide antics. Lately, I've been trying to write this article and a funny occurrence has popped up, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim have gotten only worse & worse as I continue to work on it, now to the point that I threw out the old one. At this point, this team is looking like it has given up and there's nothing left but a lost season, one that was full of expectations. If you think about it, it's a little like the Derrick Rose situation with the Chicago Bulls in the NBA Playoffs, really.
For those who don't follow the NBA, Derrick Rose is the Bulls' biggest star but due to a painful injury, he missed the entire season this year. However, the team, Rose and the press continued to tell the world that Rose could "possibly" come back, at any moment. That's where I see the correlation with this Angels team and Derrick Rose, Rose never came back and although the season is early, it really doesn't feel like this team will rise out of the ashes, although it is possible and I'm sure it'll be teased until (if) the Halos get above .500. This team is an extremely expensive tease, full of talent and expectations, one that should have led to a World Series ring in 2013.
Don't get me wrong, that could still happen, it's early. At this point though, looking at the team that's on the field, it doesn't seem like it's in the cards, the box that holds the cards or the drunk guy passing out the cards and yelling "BLACKJACK" for no given reason, like there's no given reason why Erick Aybar can't stop committing errors or Joe Blanton can't stop losing. If you couldn't tell, this season has been a trying one for all Angels fans, myself and the entire staff of LA Angels Insider included. Although we write about what you, the fans, want to hear about and try to get the inside scoop, at the end of the day, we're fans just like all of you.
Last night while the team was up four to two against the Chicago White Sox, I was excited to see that the Angels had a lead but realistically, I think we all generally knew that the lead would be lost and this would somehow, someway, be another Halos non-victory (Sorry Rory, RIP.). There's pessimism and then there's what seems to be the majority of this team's fans outlooks, realism. Everything that could go wrong, generally has. A game in which Jered Weaver pitches seems like but a faint memory, back when the team wasn't over 10 games back of the Texas Rangers. Joe Blanton, Barry Enright, etc. aka the League of Oh God Make It Stop Starting Pitchers, doing exactly what most of us predicted they would do when they were obtained for this season, which is nothing. As in nothing beneficial to the club. The "big time" signings of Albert Pujols, C.J. Wilson and Josh Hamilton now seem like nightmares, signings that may cripple the franchise for a long time, possibly almost a decade.
In general, this is, in my opinion, the most trying season that Halos fans have had to endure since before the team won a championship in 2002. The spirit of the team (Torii Hunter) is gone, all semblance of above average pitching is gone, the expectations have now been lowered and the worst thing that could happen to this team has now taken place, it seems like all hope is gone. I'll be uncensored here, I'm pissed off.
Everyday, I talk to Angels fans who ask me what is wrong with this team and what could possibly save it. It would be easy to say that Mike Scioscia or/and Mike Butcher should be fired, definitely Butcher before Scioscia but honestly, I don't really think that would make much of a dent anyways. This team is already lost and have stuck their heads in a tree full of rabid wildlife, there's no reason to add a beehive on a branch right above them. Stability, at this moment, may be the only hope of a successful season at this point. The most frustrating part of all of this is that when I'm asked what could save the season is that when I'm asked that question, my face turns blank and all I can do is a half hearted shrug as really, I have no clue.
To improve on what have been an abysmal season, nearly every player would have to improve their statistics, Weaver would have to come off the DL with a vengeance, Hamilton would have to channel his inner Vladimir Guerrero and start ripping the seams off the baseball like he used to in Texas/Cincinnati and a myriad of other things as well. It's really not going to be easy and when I look at this team, I don't think it's the record that frustrates me, it's the general aura of acceptance.
I think the team has accepted that this very may well be who they are, the Yankees without the wins. The idea of this being true makes me sick, as well as the likely fact that with the Angels down 2-0 in the 7th tonight will probably mean this is a loss in the record books, eventually. The Rally Monkey has grown up and turned into a full blown ape that won't stop throwing poop at you, eating your plantains you left on the counter and ripping your face off because it's bored and there's no new episodes of Game Of Thrones on the DVR.
I just wish the Angels would toughen up and say "it's on like donkey kong" because for now, it looks like it's on like Amanda Bynes at a rave.
Dazed, confused and way too much money for what seems like a general lack of talent.
C'est la vie, my beloved Halos. C'est la vie.