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AngelsWin.com Prospect Hotlist (4/23/2018)

Our top Los Angeles Angels prospect through 4/22/2018 is….. 1. Jose Suarez, LHP (2.13 ERA, 12 2/3 IP, 27 K’s) The southpaw was promoted to Double-A after just two starts in High-A ball after fanning 18 batters over just 9 combined innings. Suarez is now the youngest starting pitcher in Double-A, but that didn’t stop him from generating more whiffs as he fanned 9 over just 3 2/3 innings in his debut for the Mobile Bay Bears. He’s currently tied for the minor league lead with 27 strikeouts. Equipped with a fastball sits at 91-93 MPH, that touches 95, Suarez best pitch is his plus plus change-up to go along with a good slider and curve that’s a work in progress. Coming off a big 2017 where he fanned 90 over 68 2/3 while posting a 3.28 ERA, we’re expecting big things from the lefty in ’18 and so far he’s off to a sizzling start. 2. Taylor Ward, 3B – AA (.392/.492/.559 with 2 HR, 2 SB) The Angels saw enough in Ward’s approach at the plate and athleticism to move him from catcher to third base prior to his ’18 minor league campaign and so far he’s rewarded them with a strong start. Ward has 20 hits and 10 walks through his first 15 games, while posting a 1.061 OPS. He has committed 4 errors at the hot corner, but the Angels are encouraged by his play there early on. 3. Jose Miguel Fernandez, 2B – AAA (.371/.443/.548 with 2 HR, 5 2B) Following up a solid 2017 campaign in the Dodgers organization which saw JMF slash .306/.367/.496 with 16 HR in just 93 games, the Cuban infielder is off to a hot start with the Salt Lake Bees and could be the first called up should an injury happen to either Kinsler or Cozart. 4. Justin Anderson, RHP – AAA (8 2/3 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 14 K’s) The 25-year old showed a good moving mid-90s fastball and knock out breaking pitch in spring training, notching seven scoreless innings while fanning seven. He has yet to be scored upon in 2018 since and was rewarded with a promotion from Double-A to Triple-A. Anderson has punched out 14 batters across two levels in 8 2/3 relief innings. One to watch as a potential big league call-up this season for the Angels. 5. David Fletcher, SS/2B – AAA (.366/.400/.549 4 BB, 1 K) Fletcher is second in the PCL in hits (26) and is following up yet another solid spring training camp with a great start to his first full season in Triple-A. If he keeps this up, there will be a pretty good battle between JMF and himself for the starting second base job after Kinsler’s contract is up this season.  Fletcher makes good contact and has a good idea at the plate. He has walked 4 times vs. just one strikeout. 6. Griffin Canning, RHP – AA (12 1/3 IP, 15 K, 2.19 ERA, .186 BAA) Canning was the talk of the town in Arizona this past spring when scouts saw his fastball sit between 94-97 MPH as part of a solid 4-pitch mix. Like Suarez, it only took two starts in High-A ball before getting promoted to Double-A. Canning’s first start in AA didn’t fare as well as Suarez, but he was untouchable in his two starts with the 66ers. Canning didn’t allow a run over 8 2/3 innings, striking out 12. Check out how Canning grips the baseball for each of his pitches and much more in our interview with him a few weeks back. http://thesportsdaily.com/2018/04/04/angels-pitcher-griffin-canning-talks-with-angelswin-com-a1w1/ 7. John Lamb, LHP – AAA (15 2/3, 16 K, 2.87 ERA, .190 BAA, 0.89 WHIP) Whenever a starting pitcher in the PCL can limit the opposition to a .190 batting average, while sporting a shiny 2.87 ERA & 0.89 WHIP you take notice. Lamb a former top prospect in the Kansas City Royals organization appears fully healthy and has carried over a solid spring training performance into his first four starts with the Bees. 8. Zach Houchins, 3B – AAA (.370/.400/.543 with 2 HR, 2 BB, 4 K) Houchins got a late season call-up to Triple-A after clubbing 14 HR in Double-A and hit .500, including 3 triples & a double in just 4 contests. He showed a good 2/2 BB/K rate at the plate with Salt Lake and has carried that over through his 13 games in ’18, boasting a .943 OPS thus far. The reports on Houchins defense at third base have been really positive. 9. Brandon Marsh & Jo Adell, OF Low-A (Combined: 18 BB, 26 RBI) Despite the cold weather that has postponed a handful of games early on in addition to the tough chilly conditions to play in, Marsh and Adell have shown really good plate discipline and have flashed 5-tool ability. Adell leads the Midwest League in RBI (15) and has shown great defense in CF and speed on the bases. The Angels top pick in 17 has an .850 OPS despite not being able to get into a rhythm due to game postponements & frigid weather. Adell has walked seven times and stolen 3 bags without being caught. Marsh boasts a .423 OBP, .923 OPS and has walked 11 times already. The reports have been great on Marsh defense in right field and his arm has been identified as one not to run on. Like Adell, Marsh has good speed and budding power. Both of these guys drove in 15 runs and each clubbed a grand slam in last Friday’s contest vs. Clinton. 10. Daniel Procopio, RHP – High-A (11 IP, 18 K, 0.82 ERA, .108 BAA) Procopio has a fastball that runs a lot, a cutter and a curveball. His best pitch is his fastball as it runs up there in the mid 90’s and over powers some guys. The pitch he has been working on is his cutter and has seen improvement on this season is his cutter, which has a sharp break in on the hitters. Check out our interview with Procopio last year. http://thesportsdaily.com/2017/06/15/q-a-with-angels-10th-round-pick-daniel-procopio/ Just missed the list….. Hutton Moyer: (6 HR, 7 SB, .729 Slg Pct.). Michael Hermosillo: (3 HR, 4 SB, .378 OBP). Luis Rengifo: (11 SB, 13 BB, .384 OBP). Joe Gatto: (3.46 ERA, 13 IP, 20 K). Jose Rodriguez: (2.40 ERA, 15 IP, 14 K). Keep an eye on edition: While these guys are either too old to be considered prospects or no longer qualify due to major league time, they’ve been killing it and could be considered for a future promotion this season. Jabari Blash: (Leads the minors in HR with 8 & is second with 19 RBI to teammate Chris Carter (23) who leads all minor leaguers. Blash is boasting an insane 1.427 OPS, playing both RF & CF). Kaleb Cowart: (While he’s played just 3 games in AAA Cowart has 6 hits and 4 RBI, played SS in two of three games). Sherman Johnson: (while he’s played in just 5 games thus far due to a loaded roster, the utility infielder has boasted a .386 BA, with a crazy .1646 OPS. Johnson has clubbed 4 HR in just 18 at bats)
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Our first episode of our 2018 AngelsWin.com podcast is HERE!

Check out our first AngelsWin.com Podcast of 2018. Today our special guest was the OC Register’s Jeff Fletcher. Hosts Adam Dodge, Geoff Stoddart & Chuck Richter talked Angels Baseball as it relates to Ohtani, the great start to the season, predictions, discussed some of the top performers down on the farm & covered many other interesting topics about the ball club to date. Give it a listen!
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Angels, already happy with Shohei Ohtani, are moving him up in batting order

Shohei Ohtani mania is sweeping the MLB world by storm, and even the Angels were happy with his development, apparently. Ohtani, who has already crushed three homers and driven in 11 runs, is currently batting .346. Those numbers are certainly not indicative of someone who hits out of the 8-hole. The Angels appear to be aware of that fact, so they’re moving him up in the batting order. Ohtani was moved up to seventh in the order for Friday’s game against the Royals at Kauffman Stadium. We’re only midway through April, and Ohtani has already been moved up. How long until he’s hitting fifth, or even cleanup? I dream of a world where Ohtani is hitting in the 4-spot — behind Mike Trout and Justin Upton, with Albert Pujols moving down a notch — but hey, it’s not as crazy as it sounds. And I know I’m not the only one that would love to see it.
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Shohei Ohtani gives bat to fan, then crushes triple with new one

If you’re not feeling Angels sensation Shohei Ohtani — the second coming of Babe Ruth — then you’re not a baseball fan. Ohtani has burst onto the scene, crushing home runs and nearly even pulling off a perfect game in his first career MLB start. Not only that, he’s an awesome guy, which we recently learned. Ohtani was signing autographs for fans before a recent game, when he gave one particular kid his bat, which was pretty great. Not only that, the loss of the bat clearly didn’t affect him, as he crushed a triple with a new one. Yeah, we’re on the Ohtani bandwagon.
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Predict Albert Pujols' 3,000th Hit

By David Saltzer, AngelsWin.com Senior Writer With 2 more hits last night against Texas, including a homerun, Albert Pujols sits just 19 hits shy of becoming the 32nd player in all of Major League Baseball to join the 3,000 hit club. That’s an amazing accomplishment! So, let’s make it a little more fun for Angels fans. It’s time to predict when, where, and how he will cross that barrier. With a present slash line of .277/.306/.477, Albert Pujols has 13 hits in 47 ABs spanning 11 games. He’s getting 4.27 ABs per game, and slightly over 1 hit per game. That means if he maintains his present rates, he should collect his 3,000th hit by April 28th. That’s a home game against the Yankees, which would be something special for the crowd to see (and honestly, who wouldn’t want to see the Yankees have to watch that celebration?). But, there are many variables that go into this. Albert could get a day off or two, he could go on a tear, or he could cool down. Pitchers could pitch him differently so as not to become the pitcher who dished up his 3,000th hit. Around that time, the Angels will be facing the Red Sox, Giants, Astros, and Yankees, all of whom have good pitching. With all that in mind Angels fans, make some friendly bets and place your votes on the following questions. See if you can be the most accurate in predicting this feat. Take Our Poll Take Our Poll Take Our Poll Take Our Poll     
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Class Acts

Image by Larry Brown Sports By David Saltzer, AngelsWin.com Senior Writer As a fan, I like players who play with some humility. I don’t go for the big bat flips or showboating that some players display. In some instances, I can understand it, and appreciate when a player gets caught up in the moment and the drama, but on a general basis, I’m not a fan of players with major egos. It’s seems all too often players let their egos overshadow their accomplishments on the field. So, as a fan, I’d like to point out how classy all of the players have been on the Angels, and in particular how classy Mike Trout and Albert Pujols have been, while Shohei Ohtani has been creating a media storm with #Sho-Time. With a 7-3, the Angels are off to their best start to the season since 1987. They’ve done so as a team. While Shohei has pitched the Angels to two wins, lots of players have been contributing to the team to get all those wins. Baseball is a team sport, and it takes contributions from everyone to win a game. Players have done it on offense and defense. And they have done that all while adjusting to different roles and uses to allow Shohei to both pitch and hit. They’ve also done so with all the extra media presence, both national and international, to cover Shohei’s start to the season. But two players really stand out as setting an exemplary level of humility when it comes to Ohtani: Mike Trout and Albert Pujols. As a fan, I can’t be more impressed by them. To say that Trout and Pujols are in rare company as players is a bit of an understatement. Yesterday, when Mike Trout scored his 700th run, he became just the 8th player in all of Major League Baseball to ever accomplish both feats by age 27 (among the others who have done so . . . Albert Pujols). As for Pujols, with his hit yesterday, he is just 21 hits shy of hitting 3,000 in his career. Only 31 players in all of baseball have ever had 3,000 or more hits in their careers. But, only 3 of them have done so with 600 or more homeruns. When Pujols accomplishes that feat, he will truly be in rare company (Hank Aaron, Willie Mays, and Alex Rodriguez). Equally as impressive, with 1922 RBIs in his career, Pujols is likely this season to become just the 4th player in history to drive in more than 2,000 RBIs (Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth, and Alex Rodriguez). With all the historic accomplishments that Trout and Pujols are accomplishing, it is truly refreshing to see how they are reacting to all that Shohei is accomplishing and the buzz that he is generating. Yesterday, after breaking out of his mini-slump, and after scoring his 700th run, and hitting his 500th hit in Angel Stadium, he was asked about Shohei by Alex Curry. And, he didn’t use it as an opportunity to talk about himself–he praised the young Angels phenom. And, as Pujols steadily climbs to his historic levels, he has not appeared fazed by all the press and focus being given to Ohtani. Rather than demand more attention, he appears happy to be playing his game and letting his accomplishments speak for themselves. None of this is meant to take away what Shohei is accomplishing, or how he is handling himself. The maturity, poise, and humility that he is showing as a 23-year old is inspirational. And, the historic nature of his accomplishments are amazing! With 12 strikeouts yesterday, Shohei became just the third player ever to record double digit strikeouts and hit homeruns in three consecutive games (joining Ken Brett and Babe Ruth). And, he’s doing so under the microscope of all the press and with the hopes of two nations resting on his shoulders. In many ways, the fact that Shohei chose the Angels for his Major League team is good for him (as well as for us the fans!). Playing with Trout and Pujols, the subject of so much press and scrutiny over the years, and at the same time achieving historic feats of their own, gives him some help dealing with all that is going on in his young career. To say that his start has been electric is an understatement. The atmosphere when he’s playing is more intense than when Vlad first came. The stadium is more charged than the height of Wallyworld. Which is why it would be easy to understand how some players could feel left out of the spotlight. And yet, they haven’t acted that way. When I talk with my sons about what it takes to be a good person, I like to have role models with whom they can identify. With humility in short supply with many of today’s athletes and celebrities, especially in the age of social media, it’s good to see Trout, Pujols, and all the Angels show such good examples during this incredible period with Shohei Ohtani. Just one of the many reasons why these two are such class acts.  
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Shohei Ohtani sets records - Owns the internet in his first week in the big leagues

Let’s break down what Ohtani has accomplished in both yesterday’s start against the Oakland A’s, and his overall first week on both the mound and at the plate in the big leagues. Ohtani should later be named the unanimous selection for the American League Player of the Week award. But before we dig in, just to set the mood, let’s all gaze at this pitching line from yesterday’s contest: (7.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 12 SO, 0 HR; 91 pitches — 59 strikes) Shohei Ohtani retired first 19 batters faced in yesterday’s magical start in Anaheim, which was the first time he’s toed the rubber for the Angels at home. Ohtani became the third player all-time to pitch 7+ innings with one-or-fewer hits and 12+ strikeouts in one of first two career pitching appearances since Steve Woodard, MIL in 1997 and Juan Marichal, SF in 1960. Ohtani’s 18 total strikeouts this year tie an Angels record in first two career pitching appearances with Tim Fortungo. His 12 strikeouts on Sunday vs. the Oakland A’s ties the American League record for a player in one of their first two games as a pitcher, Tim Fortungo (Angels) who did it in 1992 and Elmer Myers Philadelphia A’s in 1915. Additionally, Ohtani has become the third player all-time to homer in three consecutive games and have a double-digit strikeout game in the same season, set by both Ken Brett in 1973 and Babe Ruth in 1916. Shohei was the third Angels rookie with 12+ strikeouts in a game (Tim Fortugno in 1992 and Jorge Rubio (15 SO) in 1966). With Ohtani’s win on Sunday he became the first player with two wins and 3+ home runs in his team’s first 10 games of a season since Jim Shaw did it for the 1919 Washington Senators (Shaw’s three HR came in the games where he pitched). Here’s some more Ohtani stats, facts & comments from the internet:                                          
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Angels OF Kevin Williams Talks with AngelsWin.com

Interview conducted by David Saltzer, AngelsWin.com Senior Writer There are lots of reasons to be a fan of a baseball player. Maybe you like the way in which he plays the game. Maybe he did something special while you were attending a game. Maybe he grew up where you did or attended your alma mater. When it comes to Kevin Williams, I became a fan as I interviewed him. Unfortunately, I missed seeing him in Orem, so I didn’t have a chance to see his play. But, while there, he posted a .322/.385/.576 line with 4 HRs and 1 SB in just 15 games. The Angels coaching staff didn’t miss that, and they challenged him this year by jumping him a level to High-A ball. That’s a big vote of confidence for Williams, who was drafted in the 13th round of the 2017 draft. What impressed me most was his positive attitude. His demeanor. His humility. All those intangible qualities that help differentiate a person. As I was preparing to leave the IE66ers, Kevin Williams and Jahmai Jones were having a heated discussion as to who was taller. That’s Williams on the right and Jones on the left. Both are listed at 6’0″, but Jones was convinced that his shoulders were higher than Williams and therefore, he was slightly taller. I told them both that I’d take a picture and let you, the fans decide. So, please feel free to weigh in on this debate, as they would love your input. Feel free to use any electronic measuring method you wish! Take Our PollPlease click below to watch the interview with Kevin Williams and then head out to the IE66ers to watch him play. I bet you’ll become a fan too. Kevin Williams Interviews with AngelsWin April 3, 2018 from AngelsWin.com on Vimeo.  
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Angels reveal pitching plan for Shohei Ohtani

Angels pitcher/designated hitter Shohei Ohtani has burst onto the scene since crushing a home run in his first MLB plate appearance. The team is going to continue using Ohtani as both a hitter and a pitcher, but he’s going to get plenty of rest between starts, apparently. Angels manager Mike Scioscia told reporters that Ohtani will be pitching every seven days, which is similar to the schedule he was on in Japan. “We’re going to be very diligent in checking in with our medical department to see what Ohtani’s availability will be on a day-to-day basis, and to make sure that he has the best chance to contribute with the bat and on the mound,” he said. Ohtani will continue to serve as DH in between starts, so the extra rest should work out well for both him and the team. It sure looks like Ohtani is on his way to becoming one of MLB’s rising stars, we just hope the Angels don’t overuse him. They’ll need him to remain healthy to be competitive this year.
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Zack Cozart on his first career walk off

Our good friends at the MLB Network Greg Amsinger, Eric Byrnes and Bill Ripken spoke with Angels infielder Zack Cozart about his approach to the at-bat that beat the Indians in extra innings, 3-2. On his first career walk-off, Cozart said, “It was awesome. Honestly, I was just trying not to strike out right there, put the ball in play, try to get on for Trouty and I guess that’s what made that swing that much better, was I wasn’t trying to do too much. Man, the feeling’s awesome. We grinded out a lot of at-bats, pitchers did great today and [it’s a] big win for us.”  
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Angels 2B Jahmai Jones Interviews with AngelsWin.com

Interview by David Saltzer, AngelsWin.com Senior Writer Sometimes you meet people who are mature beyond their years. And, sometimes you meet people with amazing talent. Rarely, you meet people with both. One of those people with that combination of maturity and talent is Jahmai Jones, a rising star in the Angels organization. There’s a lot to like with Jahmai Jones as a player. He hits. He steals. He gets on base. He has power. He fields. He does whatever it takes to help his team win. But, what really makes him stand out is his attitude and maturity. He wants to help his team, and he wants to win. This offseason, he was approached by Angels GM Billy Eppler to change positions from the OF (where he’s been playing for the past few years) back to 2B, where he played in high school. Rather than look at it as a challenge, he told me he saw it as an “opportunity”. That’s wisdom way beyond his 20 years. AngelsWin.com sat down with Jahmai to talk about his first Major League Spring Training camp. We found out who really helped him and what he learned. We talked a lot about making the transition to 2B, and how he will make the best of the opportunity that he’s been given. Please click below to watch our interview with Jahmai Jones. And then, head out to the IE66ers to watch him play. You’ll be glad you did. Jahmai Jones Interviews with AngelsWin.com April 3, 2018 from AngelsWin.com on Vimeo.            
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Angels Pitcher Griffin Canning Talks with AngelsWin.com

Interview conducted by David Saltzer, AngelsWin.com Senior Writer One of the many rising stars in the Angels Minor Leagues is pitcher Griffin Canning. A local boy, out of UCLA and Rancho Santa Margarita, Griffin grew up an Angels fan and yearns to pitch for his home town team. The Angels were lucky to get Griffin in the second round of the 2017 draft. After drafting him, the Angels decided to be cautious with him, due to his large workload in college, and shut him down for the remainder of the season. But, that did not diminish either the Angels plans for him, or temper their enthusiasm for him. Instead, after seeing his development in Spring Training, they are challenging him with his initial pro-experience coming at High-A ball, with the Inland Empire 66ers. It’s as if he lost no development and he is up for the challenge. AngelsWin.com got to sit down with Griffin and get to know him as a player and a person better. Based on reports that we have heard about him, we, like the Angels, are very excited to watch Griffin develop as a professional. He has frontline starter material, and he could move through the system quickly. Fans who wish to see Griffin pitch can do so with the Inland Empire 66ers. Griffin is scheduled to pitch the Home Opener this Thursday. But they better do so quickly, as seats are selling fast, and Griffin is someone you definitely want to go see pitch. Please click here to watch our interview with this rising star.
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Angels Shohei Ohtani has historical night at the Big A

Shohei Ohtani became the first player to earn a win and then hit a home run in a start as a non-pitcher in his next game since Babe Ruth on June 13-14, 1921. He also became the first rookie with 3+ hits and 1+ wins in his team’s first 6 games of a season since Dutch Stryker for 1924 Boston Braves per STATS LLC.  
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Shohei Ohtani ignored by teammates after hitting first career MLB home run

There’s been a lot of doubt surrounding Shohei Ohtani hitting DH for the Angels, but he proved the critics wrong in his first career home game on Tuesday night. Ohtani hit eighth in the order, and was listed as the designated hitter. Spoiler alert: He delivered. In just his first career at-bat at Angel Stadium, Ohtani blasted a three-run home run to right. The fans went absolutely nuts. As for Ohtani’s teammates, though, they had some fun with him, and rather than initially giving him dap, they gave him the silent treatment. Not a bad way to get the home fans behind you.
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Last Week in Angels Baseball - The "Hello 2018!" Edition

By Glen McKee, Angelswin.com Staff Writer It wasn’t a full week but it was the first week of real Angels baseball in 2018.  All I can say is: thank whoever made the schedule that we got to start out against Oakland.  Their defense was so abysmal that “abysmal” isn’t a strong enough word to describe it.  Let’s take a look at that series and how it has set us up to face Cleveland and then Oakland again, this time at home.  Just remember, even though it has only been four games, it is never too early to start judging! The good.  Two people stick out: Zack Cozart and Shohei Ohtani.  Zack Cozart is primed to be the best offseason acquisition for the Angels outside of the other dude I mentioned above.  There was worry that his 2017 season would be a fluke, but his start to 2018 gives us hope that it was just the beginning.  Through four games he’s slashing .357/.400/.857/1.257.  Of course those numbers are unsustainable but damn, it’s nice to see an Angel get off to a torrid start.  The Zack Attack is for real. Now, how about Shohei?  Yes, he did give up a 3-run HR but that was his only mistake.  He retired 14 of the final 15 batters he faced (again, thank you, Oakland).  He put up one of two QS of the weekend for the Angels, if you care about that kind of thing.  He walked one and struck out six in his Major League debut, after what appeared to be a disastrous spring.  Ohtani gave us hope that he won’t be a bust. Honorary mentions: Tyler Skaggs, Andrelton Simmons, Jim Johnson, Martin Maldonado The bad.  What a difference two pitches can make.  Garrett Richards, the potential ace, was having a decent game and then he gave up a 3-run HR, and then a solo HR.  Whomp Whomp.  The Angels went on to lose that game when the offense went to sleep after getting us excited with an early four runs.  Now Richards will have to find his mojo against a tough Cleveland team. Blake Parker started the year as the apparent closer.  Coming out of the weekend with a 13.50 ERA and a 4.50 WHIP should presumably relieve him of that duty.  There was nothing at all good about Parker this weekend. Kole Calhoun was part of that early excitement in the first game, going 3-6 with a triple and a HR.  He followed that up with an 0-fer in the rest of the games.  His defense is still on spot but seeing his streakiness illustrated so vividly in the first four games was a bit worrisome. Dishonorable mentions: Luis Valbuena, Cam Bedrosian. The rest.  Mike Trout started the season with his first ever 0-6, and then spent the next three games making up for that.  By no coincidence, the Angels won those next three games.  Keynan Middleton appeared in two of the games and might have set himself up to be closer, such is the uncertainty of the bullpen this early in the season. What’s next.  After escaping Oakland mostly unscathed, the Angels have three at home versus Cleveland (1-2), a day off, and then three at home versus Oakland (1-3).  Andrew Heaney, my pick for our surprise pitcher of the year, looks to make his debut sometime during the Oakland season, probably Saturday. Predictions.  The Angels got a lot of luck in Oakland, in the form of errors that were scored as hits.  The bullpen also closed out a few games with the tying run close to scoring and made the games a lot more nerve-wracking than they should have been.  That kind of luck tends to balance out over a season and it will catch up with them a bit this week.  1-2 versus Cleveland, and 2-1 versus Oakland (as long as Khris Davis gets to play in LF again).  Feel free to post your predictions below.
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com

 

Check Out What's New at Angels Stadium

By David Saltzer, AngelsWin.com Senior Writer There have been a lot of words used to describe Angels Stadium by fans over the years. Comfortable. Convenient. Family-friendly. Generic. But there is one word that Angels fans have never used to describe their home, especially when it comes to the food. And that word is “amazing”. Until now. You read it right, the food at Angels Stadium is amazing! For the past 32 years, my family and I have had season tickets. And in all that time, one of the most common refrains I’ve heard from fans is that our stadium food has been subpar, especially compared to other stadiums in the game. But that is about to change. Legends, the Angels Stadium food management partner, spent over $3 million dollars on upgrading the kitchens throughout the stadium. And it shows! On Friday, I attended a media preview event for all the new food and merchandise items, and I was blown away. The sheer number of new and improved food items was staggering. To give you an idea, I couldn’t even try every new item with just a sampler plate as there were too many items to try! Moreover, I couldn’t come up with just one new favorite item. At one restaurant alone, the Changeup, I couldn’t decide between the Pork Katsu, the Teriyaki Chicken, and the Cheesesteak Sandwich. Add in the other restaurants, and I was torn between the Empanadas, the Cubano Grilled Cheese, the Crispy Jidori Chicken Wings (pictured above at the Saint Archer Brewing Co. Restaurant), and the Smoke Ring Spud. As a season ticket holder, one of the biggest challenges in going to all of the games has always been the repetitive nature of all the food in the stadium. But now, there are plenty of options to tickle one’s fancy. What really impressed me was the Changeup Restaurant. Each month throughout the season, Legends created a menu inspired by a different player on the team. Here’s the whole lineup for the season. Not only will the menu change every month, but in many ways, the Changeup will operate as a “test kitchen” for the stadium. If items prove truly popular at the restaurant, they may find their way into other parts of the stadium. Personally, I think it would be really cool if the players got involved and made it a bit of a competition as to who sold the most items during his month with the winner making a donation to a charity of his choice. (And before anyone jumps on me, yes, I know that there are rules and things about advertising that may make this impossible–but it still would be really cool IMHO). I could easily eat at this restaurant once or twice a homestand, and since the menu rotates, I can honestly say that I will eat more at the stadium. For the true stadium foodies, Legends created a unique pin program for fans. With each lapel pin purchase, fans can receive a $5 discount of $25 or more purchased in the team store. When fans collect all 9 lapel pins, they can purchase a unique item in the team store. Here are all the pins. Legends didn’t forget about two other things: families and deserts. I asked, and there will be plenty of family friendly fare at the stadium. In particular, my sons wanted me to ask about Icees and Wetzel’s Pretzels (their two favorite items) and was assured that they will be there. As will most of the usual Concourse items, like hot dogs and things. But, they may be really tempted by plenty of the new options, especially the upgraded deserts. One that I think will really get them is The Mound, a helmet filled with 15 chocolate chip cookies! The hardest part about this desert may be working out how to share it. Legends also is in charge of the merchandising in the stadium, and they added a lot of new gear for fans. Hands down, my favorite was this retro-looking jacket. I’m sure that there will be one hanging in my closet soon. If you want unique gear, Legends created some special items just for the Home Opener. So, be sure to go by a store during the opening home stand to get some of this gear. There were plenty of new and improved merchandise options from all of the partner companies. But again, having a family, I did ask, and yes, there will be plenty of family-friendly items for fans. The $7 hat will still remain, along with an affordable youth T-shirt and an adult T-shirt. In thinking about all of this, it seems that Legends and the Angels truly want to enhance the overall fan experience at the stadium. Between the new scoreboard (which, if you haven’t seen it, is amazing!), the revamped food truly adds value throughout the stadium. Legends motto was “Restaurant quality food in the Concourse”, and I believe that the new items will achieve that. For the premium seat fans, Legends upgraded the experience as well. In the Diamond Club, the upgraded items are truly sumptuous. I really enjoyed the Beer Braised Short Rib with Aged Cheddar Grits, but the other items looked equally as good. And, for fans who have in-seat service, Legends unveiled its RBI program–Restaurant Brought In-Seat. I really enjoyed the improved Carne Asada Nachos (way better than the previous chicken nachos), the Fried Chicken Sandwhich, and the Pastrami Fries. Again, the improved food adds an incredible value for fans in those areas. Besides the lack of variety, the one criticism that I have heard over the years about Angels Stadium food has been the slow lines. So, I asked Legends management about that, and I was assured that they will be monitoring throughput at each restaurant. Additionally, I was told that at the bottom of each ticket will be a way for fans to give feedback on their experience. Obviously the most popular items and eating times will require the most time, but, with the investment in the kitchens, Legends is working to reduce wait times. Normally, in an offseason, Angels fans are always hopeful for the team to make improvements on the field. This year, with Shohei Ohtani, Zack Cozart, and Ian Kinsler, the team didn’t disappoint. But, as much as the team did to improve the product on the field, they did even more to improve things off the field. They really raised the overall stadium experience for fans. Whether it is your first time going to the stadium or your hundredth time, take your time and explore the stadium. You’ll notice plenty of changes, and as a fan, I can’t be more excited! If the pictures alone aren’t enough to make your mouth water, do yourself a favor, go try it. You’ll be happy that you did.      
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AngelsWin.com Staff's 2018 Predictions

It’s Opening Day. Nothing is better. Baseball is back, and not in a Spring Training way. The games are real. The stats count. For the next 6 months, the chase for October is on! With that in mind, the AngelsWin.com staff (dare I say brain trust?) has put our collective baseball analysis together, and have come up with our 2018 predictions for the Angels. Feel free to copy and paste your own predictions as we count down the minutes until our 1:00 opener in Oakland. What grade would you give the Angels this offseason?   Nate Trop: A- (Would have liked a reliever). Robert Cunningham: A Brent Hubbard: A- The Angels addressed all of their offensive holes and added a future ace pitcher, with the bonus that he is a part time DH. The Minus is only because Kinsler at age 36, while certainly a great candidate for a season, isn’t really a long-term solution. Geoff Stoddart: A Chuck Richter: A Adam Dodge: A Dave Saltzer: A Biggest question going into the season?   Nate Trop: Bullpen. Robert Cunningham: Starting Rotation. Brent Hubbard: Who is the Angels best reliever? Someone will step forward, I just don’t know who. Geoff Stoddart: Will our pitching (starting and pen) be enough for us to compete? Chuck Richter: Bullpen, health of starting pitching. Adam Dodge: Pitching health. Dave Saltzer: Will the starting pitching hold up? (close second question, how will the bullpen do?). Which Angels player or prospect will create a buzz out of the gate?  Nate Trop: Adell Robert Cunningham: Player: Cozart, Prospect: Adell Brent Hubbard: Player: Cozart, Prospect: Jones. Geoff Stoddart: Ohtani Chuck Richter: Ohtani Adam Dodge: Ohtani Dave Saltzer: Player: Ohtani, Prospect: Marsh Who is your Angels’ 2018 sleeper? Nate Trop: Calhoun (lowered wall baby!) Robert Cunningham: Ramirez Brent Hubbard: I don’t know if you can call a player with a .933 OPS in 2017 a sleeper, but Cozart. Last year was borderline MVP caliber. He could be the 2nd or 3rd best hitter in the lineup. Geoff Stoddart: Cozart Chuck Richter: Rivera Adam Dodge: Tropeano Dave Saltzer: Kinsler (he’s going to be the sparkplug this lineup needs and has something to prove). Which Angel player is most likely to disappoint in 2018? Nate Trop: Skaggs or Ohtani, depending on how sky high your Ohtani expectations are. Robert Cunningham: Bridwell Brent Hubbard: Maldonado. If his offense isn’t near a .650 OPS, I don’t think he’s the regular catcher by the end of the year. Geoff Stoddart: Pujols Chuck Richter: Skaggs Adam Dodge: Kinsler Dave Saltzer: Ohtani. With all the hype and pressure in trying to be a 2-way player, it creates a really stressful situation for him. After adjusting to the league, he will do much better, but by then, the media frenzy could be brutal for him. As fans, we need to remember he is 23, and a rookie, and should treat him as such. Which Angel player is your 2018 comeback player of the year pick? Nate Trop: Calhoun Robert Cunningham: Calhoun Brent Hubbard: Pujols. He slumped badly in 2017, but a return to 2012 numbers (in only 140 games) is going to happen. Geoff Stoddart: Calhoun Chuck Richter: Pujols Adam Dodge: Calhoun Dave Saltzer: Richards. He’s back, he’s healthy, and he’ll be our team’s ace! Which Angel starting pitcher will lead the team in strikeouts?  Nate Trop: Ohtani Robert Cunningham: Richards Brent Hubbard: Richards Geoff Stoddart: Ohtani Chuck Richter: Ohtani Adam Dodge: Richards Dave Saltzer: Richards Which Angel reliever pitches in the most games in 2018? Nate Trop: Alvarez Robert Cunningham: Bedrosian Brent Hubbard: Bedrosian Geoff Stoddart: Bedrosian Chuck Richter: Johnson Adam Dodge: Alvarez Dave Saltzer: Bedrosian Which Angel player finishes with the highest batting average? Nate Trop: Trout Robert Cunningham: Cozart Brent Hubbard: Trout Geoff Stoddart: Trout!!! Chuck Richter: Trout Adam Dodge: Trout Dave Saltzer: Trout Which Angel player finishes with the most home runs? Nate Trop: Upton Robert Cunningham: Trout Brent Hubbard: Trout Geoff Stoddart: Trout!!! Chuck Richter: Upton (45) Adam Dodge: Upton Dave Saltzer: Trout Which Angel player gets the most RBIs? Nate Trop: Upton Robert Cunningham: Upton Brent Hubbard: Upton Geoff Stoddart: Trout!!! Chuck Richter: Upton Adam Dodge: Upton Dave Saltzer: Upton Which Angel player steals the most bases? Nate Trop: Trout Robert Cunningham: Trout Brent Hubbard: Trout Geoff Stoddart: Trout!!! Chuck Richter: Kinsler Adam Dodge: Kinsler Dave Saltzer: Kinsler Will Mike Trout win the MVP Award?  Nate Trop: No, but he will deserve it. Robert Cunningham: Yes Brent Hubbard: Yes Geoff Stoddart: Yes!!! Chuck Richter: Yes Adam Dodge: No Dave Saltzer: Yes Will Ohtani find more success as a pitcher or a hitter?  Nate Trop: Pitcher Robert Cunningham: Pitcher Brent Hubbard: Hitter. I think he’ll finish the year with a .300 BA, 20 HR and a .850 OPS whereas he’ll be a 3.75-4.00 ERA starter. Geoff Stoddart: Pitcher Chuck Richter: Pitcher Adam Dodge: Pitcher Dave Saltzer: Pitcher Will Ohtani win the ROY award? Nate Trop: Yes Robert Cunningham: Yes, A.L. Rookie of the Year (Acuna wins N.L.) Brent Hubbard: Yes Geoff Stoddart: Yes Chuck Richter: Yes Adam Dodge: No Dave Saltzer: Yes Which Angels prospect will be named the Angels minor league player of the year?  Nate Trop: Adell Robert Cunningham: Adell Brent Hubbard: Ward. Big offensive numbers out of nowhere. Geoff Stoddart: Jam Jones Chuck Richter: Marsh Adam Dodge: Barria Dave Saltzer: Marsh How many runs will the Angels score in 2018? Nate Trop: 815 Robert Cunningham: 828 Brent Hubbard: 835. This is +125 over last year, but Trout’s transcendence into MVP God leads the way and the Angels have 3 hitters with OPS over .900 (Trout, Cozart, Upton) and 6 more over .800. (Pujols, Calhoun, Ohtani, Simmons, Kinsler, Valbuena). Geoff Stradling: 777 Chuck Richter: 750 Adam Dodge: 811 Dave Saltzer: 780 How many games will the Angels win in 2018?  Nate Trop: 96 Robert Cunningham: 92 Brent Hubbard: 96 Geoff Stradling: 88 Chuck Richter: 91 Adam Dodge: 90 Dave Saltzer: 92 (regular season and at least 5 in the postseason) What AL West team will be the toughest competition for the Angels in 2018?  Nate Trop: Astros Robert Cunningham: Astros Brent Hubbard: Astros, but only because they finish at 88 wins. Geoff Stradling: Astros Chuck Richter: Astros Adam Dodge: Astros Dave Saltzer: Astros Which team in any league will give the Angels the most trouble? Nate Trop: Yankees Robert Cunningham: Indians Brent Hubbard: The Cleveland Indians, who are the best team in Baseball. Geoff Stradling: Astros Chuck Richter: Astros Adam Dodge: Blue Jays Dave Saltzer: Astros. Every game with them will be a playoff game. And, we play them more than the Indians. Will the 2018 Angels make the playoffs? Nate Trop: Yes Robert Cunningham: Yes Brent Hubbard: Yes. By Winning the AL West. Geoff Stradling: Yes, wild card. Chuck Richter: Yes Adam Dodge: Yes, wild card. Dave Saltzer: Yes, as the wild card. Your fearless prediction? Nate Trop: Houston struggles a little bit and the Angels win the division. Robert Cunningham: Angels win the World Series vs. the Milwaukee Brewers in six games. Brent Hubbard: Mike Trout has a transcendent year that breaks the 1.250 OPS wall. That only has three names: Ruth, Bonds, and Williams. He has a 50+ 2B, 50+ HR, and 50+ SB season. Geoff Stradling: Ohtani will pitch a no hitter. Chuck Richter: The Angels battle the Astros for the division all season long. Adam Dodge:  Tropeano 15 Wins. Dave Saltzer: Not only do the Angels make the postseason, they advance to play the Indians for the American League Title.
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Last Week in Angels Baseball – The “Hello 2018!” Edition

By Glen McKee, Angelswin.com Staff Writer It wasn’t a full week but it was the first week of real Angels baseball in 2018.  All I can say is: thank whoever made the schedule that we got to start out against Oakland.  Their defense was so abysmal that “abysmal” isn’t a strong enough word to describe it.  Let’s take a look at that series and how it has set us up to face Cleveland and then Oakland again, this time at home.  Just remember, even though it has only been four games, it is never too early to start judging! The good.  Two people stick out: Zack Cozart and Shohei Ohtani.  Zack Cozart is primed to be the best offseason acquisition for the Angels outside of the other dude I mentioned above.  There was worry that his 2017 season would be a fluke, but his start to 2018 gives us hope that it was just the beginning.  Through four games he’s slashing .357/.400/.857/1.257.  Of course those numbers are unsustainable but damn, it’s nice to see an Angel get off to a torrid start.  The Zack Attack is for real. Now, how about Shohei?  Yes, he did give up a 3-run HR but that was his only mistake.  He retired 14 of the final 15 batters he faced (again, thank you, Oakland).  He put up one of two QS of the weekend for the Angels, if you care about that kind of thing.  He walked one and struck out six in his Major League debut, after what appeared to be a disastrous spring.  Ohtani gave us hope that he won’t be a bust. Honorary mentions: Tyler Skaggs, Andrelton Simmons, Jim Johnson, Martin Maldonado   The bad.  What a difference two pitches can make.  Garrett Richards, the potential ace, was having a decent game and then he gave up a 3-run HR, and then a solo HR.  Whomp Whomp.  The Angels went on to lose that game when the offense went to sleep after getting us excited with an early four runs.  Now Richards will have to find his mojo against a tough Cleveland team. Blake Parker started the year as the apparent closer.  Coming out of the weekend with a 13.50 ERA and a 4.50 WHIP should presumably relieve him of that duty.  There was nothing at all good about Parker this weekend. Kole Calhoun was part of that early excitement in the first game, going 3-6 with a triple and a HR.  He followed that up with an 0-fer in the rest of the games.  His defense is still on spot but seeing his streakiness illustrated so vividly in the first four games was a bit worrisome. Dishonorable mentions: Luis Valbuena, Cam Bedrosian.   The rest.  Mike Trout started the season with his first ever 0-6, and then spent the next three games making up for that.  By no coincidence, the Angels won those next three games.  Keynan Middleton appeared in two of the games and might have set himself up to be closer, such is the uncertainty of the bullpen this early in the season.   What’s next.  After escaping Oakland mostly unscathed, the Angels have three at home versus Cleveland (1-2), a day off, and then three at home versus Oakland (1-3).  Andrew Heaney, my pick for our surprise pitcher of the year, looks to make his debut sometime during the Oakland season, probably Saturday.   Predictions.  The Angels got a lot of luck in Oakland, in the form of errors that were scored as hits.  The bullpen also closed out a few games with the tying run close to scoring and made the games a lot more nerve-wracking than they should have been.  That kind of luck tends to balance out over a season and it will catch up with them a bit this week.  1-2 versus Cleveland, and 2-1 versus Oakland (as long as Khris Davis gets to play in LF again).  Feel free to post your predictions below.
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Check Out What’s New at Angels Stadium

By David Saltzer, AngelsWin.com Senior Writer There have been a lot of words used to describe Angels Stadium by fans over the years. Comfortable. Convenient. Family-friendly. Generic. But there is one word that Angels fans have never used to describe their home, especially when it comes to the food. And that word is “amazing”. Until now. You read it right, the food at Angels Stadium is amazing! For the past 32 years, my family and I have had season tickets. And in all that time, one of the most common refrains I’ve heard from fans is that our stadium food has been subpar, especially compared to other stadiums in the game. But that is about to change. Legends, the Angels Stadium food management partner, spent over $3 million dollars on upgrading the kitchens throughout the stadium. And it shows! On Friday, I attended a media preview event for all the new food and merchandise items, and I was blown away. The sheer number of new and improved food items was staggering. To give you an idea, I couldn’t even try every new item with just a sampler plate as there were too many items to try! Moreover, I couldn’t come up with just one new favorite item. At one restaurant alone, the Changeup, I couldn’t decide between the Pork Katsu, the Teriyaki Chicken, and the Cheesesteak Sandwich. Add in the other restaurants, and I was torn between the Empanadas, the Cubano Grilled Cheese, the Crispy Jidori Chicken Wings (pictured above at the Saint Archer Brewing Co. Restaurant), and the Smoke Ring Spud. As a season ticket holder, one of the biggest challenges in going to all of the games has always been the repetitive nature of all the food in the stadium. But now, there are plenty of options to tickle one’s fancy. What really impressed me was the Changeup Restaurant. Each month throughout the season, Legends created a menu inspired by a different player on the team. Here’s the whole lineup for the season. Not only will the menu change every month, but in many ways, the Changeup will operate as a “test kitchen” for the stadium. If items prove truly popular at the restaurant, they may find their way into other parts of the stadium. Personally, I think it would be really cool if the players got involved and made it a bit of a competition as to who sold the most items during his month with the winner making a donation to a charity of his choice. (And before anyone jumps on me, yes, I know that there are rules and things about advertising that may make this impossible–but it still would be really cool IMHO). I could easily eat at this restaurant once or twice a homestand, and since the menu rotates, I can honestly say that I will eat more at the stadium. For the true stadium foodies, Legends created a unique pin program for fans. With each lapel pin purchase, fans can receive a $5 discount of $25 or more purchased in the team store. When fans collect all 9 lapel pins, they can purchase a unique item in the team store. Here are all the pins. Legends didn’t forget about two other things: families and deserts. I asked, and there will be plenty of family friendly fare at the stadium. In particular, my sons wanted me to ask about Icees and Wetzel’s Pretzels (their two favorite items) and was assured that they will be there. As will most of the usual Concourse items, like hot dogs and things. But, they may be really tempted by plenty of the new options, especially the upgraded deserts. One that I think will really get them is The Mound, a helmet filled with 15 chocolate chip cookies! The hardest part about this desert may be working out how to share it. Legends also is in charge of the merchandising in the stadium, and they added a lot of new gear for fans. Hands down, my favorite was this retro-looking jacket. I’m sure that there will be one hanging in my closet soon. If you want unique gear, Legends created some special items just for the Home Opener. So, be sure to go by a store during the opening home stand to get some of this gear. There were plenty of new and improved merchandise options from all of the partner companies. But again, having a family, I did ask, and yes, there will be plenty of family-friendly items for fans. The $7 hat will still remain, along with an affordable youth T-shirt and an adult T-shirt. In thinking about all of this, it seems that Legends and the Angels truly want to enhance the overall fan experience at the stadium. Between the new scoreboard (which, if you haven’t seen it, is amazing!), the revamped food truly adds value throughout the stadium. Legends motto was “Restaurant quality food in the Concourse”, and I believe that the new items will achieve that. For the premium seat fans, Legends upgraded the experience as well. In the Diamond Club, the upgraded items are truly sumptuous. I really enjoyed the Beer Braised Short Rib with Aged Cheddar Grits, but the other items looked equally as good. And, for fans who have in-seat service, Legends unveiled its RBI program–Restaurant Brought In-Seat. I really enjoyed the improved Carne Asada Nachos (way better than the previous chicken nachos), the Fried Chicken Sandwhich, and the Pastrami Fries. Again, the improved food adds an incredible value for fans in those areas. Besides the lack of variety, the one criticism that I have heard over the years about Angels Stadium food has been the slow lines. So, I asked Legends management about that, and I was assured that they will be monitoring throughput at each restaurant. Additionally, I was told that at the bottom of each ticket will be a way for fans to give feedback on their experience. Obviously the most popular items and eating times will require the most time, but, with the investment in the kitchens, Legends is working to reduce wait times. Normally, in an offseason, Angels fans are always hopeful for the team to make improvements on the field. This year, with Shohei Ohtani, Zack Cozart, and Ian Kinsler, the team didn’t disappoint. But, as much as the team did to improve the product on the field, they did even more to improve things off the field. They really raised the overall stadium experience for fans. Whether it is your first time going to the stadium or your hundredth time, take your time and explore the stadium. You’ll notice plenty of changes, and as a fan, I can’t be more excited! If the pictures alone aren’t enough to make your mouth water, do yourself a favor, go try it. You’ll be happy that you did.      
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AngelsWin.com Staff’s 2018 Predictions

It’s Opening Day. Nothing is better. Baseball is back, and not in a Spring Training way. The games are real. The stats count. For the next 6 months, the chase for October is on!   With that in mind, the AngelsWin.com staff (dare I say brain trust?) has put our collective baseball analysis together, and have come up with our 2018 predictions for the Angels. Feel free to copy and paste your own predictions as we count down the minutes until our 1:00 opener in Oakland. What grade would you give the Angels this offseason?   Nate Trop: A- (Would have liked a reliever). Robert Cunningham: A Brent Hubbard: A- The Angels addressed all of their offensive holes and added a future ace pitcher, with the bonus that he is a part time DH. The Minus is only because Kinsler at age 36, while certainly a great candidate for a season, isn’t really a long-term solution. Geoff Stradling: A Chuck Richter: A Adam Dodge: A Dave Saltzer: A Biggest question going into the season?   Nate Trop: Bullpen. Robert Cunningham: Starting Rotation. Brent Hubbard: Who is the Angels best reliever? Someone will step forward, I just don’t know who. Geoff Stradling: Will our pitching (starting and pen) be enough for us to compete? Chuck Richter: Bullpen, health of starting pitching. Adam Dodge: Pitching health. Dave Saltzer: Will the starting pitching hold up? (close second question, how will the bullpen do?). Which Angels player or prospect will create a buzz out of the gate?  Nate Trop: Adell Robert Cunningham: Player: Cozart, Prospect: Adell Brent Hubbard: Player: Cozart, Prospect: Jones. Geoff Stradling: Ohtani Chuck Richter: Ohtani Adam Dodge: Ohtani Dave Saltzer: Player: Ohtani, Prospect: Marsh Who is your Angels’ 2018 sleeper? Nate Trop: Calhoun (lowered wall baby!) Robert Cunningham: Ramirez Brent Hubbard: I don’t know if you can call a player with a .933 OPS in 2017 a sleeper, but Cozart. Last year was borderline MVP caliber. He could be the 2nd or 3rd best hitter in the lineup. Geoff Stradling: Cozart Chuck Richter: Rivera Adam Dodge: Tropeano Dave Saltzer: Kinsler (he’s going to be the sparkplug this lineup needs and has something to prove). Which Angel player is most likely to disappoint in 2018? Nate Trop: Skaggs or Ohtani, depending on how sky high your Ohtani expectations are. Robert Cunningham: Bridwell Brent Hubbard: Maldonado. If his offense isn’t near a .650 OPS, I don’t think he’s the regular catcher by the end of the year. Geoff Stradling: Pujols Chuck Richter: Skaggs Adam Dodge: Kinsler Dave Saltzer: Ohtani. With all the hype and pressure in trying to be a 2-way player, it creates a really stressful situation for him. After adjusting to the league, he will do much better, but by then, the media frenzy could be brutal for him. As fans, we need to remember he is 23, and a rookie, and should treat him as such. Which Angel player is your 2018 comeback player of the year pick? Nate Trop: Calhoun Robert Cunningham: Calhoun Brent Hubbard: Pujols. He slumped badly in 2017, but a return to 2012 numbers (in only 140 games) is going to happen. Geoff Stradling: Calhoun Chuck Richter: Pujols Adam Dodge: Calhoun Dave Saltzer: Richards. He’s back, he’s healthy, and he’ll be our team’s ace! Which Angel starting pitcher will lead the team in strikeouts?  Nate Trop: Ohtani Robert Cunningham: Richards Brent Hubbard: Richards Geoff Stradling: Ohtani Chuck Richter: Ohtani Adam Dodge: Richards Dave Saltzer: Richards Which Angel reliever pitches in the most games in 2018? Nate Trop: Alvarez Robert Cunningham: Bedrosian Brent Hubbard: Bedrosian Geoff Stradling: Bedrosian Chuck Richter: Johnson Adam Dodge: Alvarez Dave Saltzer: Bedrosian Which Angel player finishes with the highest batting average? Nate Trop: Trout Robert Cunningham: Cozart Brent Hubbard: Trout Geoff Stradling: Trout!!! Chuck Richter: Trout Adam Dodge: Trout Dave Saltzer: Trout Which Angel player finishes with the most home runs? Nate Trop: Upton Robert Cunningham: Trout Brent Hubbard: Trout Geoff Stradling: Trout!!! Chuck Richter: Upton (45) Adam Dodge: Upton Dave Saltzer: Trout Which Angel player gets the most RBIs? Nate Trop: Upton Robert Cunningham: Upton Brent Hubbard: Upton Geoff Stradling: Trout!!! Chuck Richter: Upton Adam Dodge: Upton Dave Saltzer: Upton Which Angel player steals the most bases? Nate Trop: Trout Robert Cunningham: Trout Brent Hubbard: Trout Geoff Stradling: Trout!!! Chuck Richter: Kinsler Adam Dodge: Kinsler Dave Saltzer: Kinsler Will Mike Trout win the MVP Award?  Nate Trop: No, but he will deserve it. Robert Cunningham: Yes Brent Hubbard: Yes Geoff Stradling: Yes!!! Chuck Richter: Yes Adam Dodge: No Dave Saltzer: Yes Will Ohtani find more success as a pitcher or a hitter?  Nate Trop: Pitcher Robert Cunningham: Pitcher Brent Hubbard: Hitter. I think he’ll finish the year with a .300 BA, 20 HR and a .850 OPS whereas he’ll be a 3.75-4.00 ERA starter. Geoff Stradling: Pitcher Chuck Richter: Pitcher Adam Dodge: Pitcher Dave Saltzer: Pitcher Will Ohtani win the ROY award? Nate Trop: Yes Robert Cunningham: Yes, A.L. Rookie of the Year (Acuna wins N.L.) Brent Hubbard: Yes Geoff Stradling: Yes Chuck Richter: Yes Adam Dodge: No Dave Saltzer: Yes Which Angels prospect will be named the Angels minor league player of the year?  Nate Trop: Adell Robert Cunningham: Adell Brent Hubbard: Ward. Big offensive numbers out of nowhere. Geoff Stradling: Chuck Richter: Marsh Adam Dodge:  Dave Saltzer: Marsh How many runs will the Angels score in 2018? Nate Trop: 815 Robert Cunningham: 828 Brent Hubbard: 835. This is +125 over last year, but Trout’s transcendence into MVP God leads the way and the Angels have 3 hitters with OPS over .900 (Trout, Cozart, Upton) and 6 more over .800. (Pujols, Calhoun, Ohtani, Simmons, Kinsler, Valbuena). Geoff Stradling: 777 Chuck Richter: 750 Adam Dodge: 811 Dave Saltzer: 780 How many games will the Angels win in 2018?  Nate Trop: 96 Robert Cunningham: 92 Brent Hubbard: 96 Geoff Stradling: 88 Chuck Richter: 91 Adam Dodge: 90 Dave Saltzer: 92 (regular season and at least 5 in the postseason) What AL West team will be the toughest competition for the Angels in 2018?  Nate Trop: Astros Robert Cunningham: Astros Brent Hubbard: Astros, but only because they finish at 88 wins. Geoff Stradling: Astros Chuck Richter: Astros Adam Dodge: Astros Dave Saltzer: Astros Which team in any league will give the Angels the most trouble? Nate Trop: Yankees Robert Cunningham: Indians Brent Hubbard: The Cleveland Indians, who are the best team in Baseball. Geoff Stradling: Astros Chuck Richter: Astros Adam Dodge: Blue Jays Dave Saltzer: Astros. Every game with them will be a playoff game. And, we play them more than the Indians. Will the 2018 Angels make the playoffs? Nate Trop: Yes Robert Cunningham: Yes Brent Hubbard: Yes. By Winning the AL West. Geoff Stradling: Yes, wild card. Chuck Richter: Yes Adam Dodge: Yes, wild card. Dave Saltzer: Yes, as the wild card. Your fearless prediction? Nate Trop: Houston struggles a little bit and the Angels win the division. Robert Cunningham: Angels win the World Series vs. the Milwaukee Brewers in six games. Brent Hubbard: Mike Trout has a transcendent year that breaks the 1.250 OPS wall. That only has three names: Ruth, Bonds, and Williams. He has a 50+ 2B, 50+ HR, and 50+ SB season. Geoff Stradling: Ohtani will pitch a no hitter. Chuck Richter: The Angels battle the Astros for the division all season long. Adam Dodge:  Tropeano 15 Wins. Dave Saltzer: Not only do the Angels make the postseason, they advance to play the Indians for the American League Title.
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It’s the Baseball Fan Aptitude Test (BFAT) 2018! Special “Mostly Pop Culture Reference” Edition.

By Glen McKee, Angelswin.com Senior Triviologist   Yep, opening day is right around the corner (the corner being roughly nine days, depending upon when I publish this), so it is once again time to put your baseball knowledge to the test with a 30-question quiz, one question for each team.  Score this test yourself because you should know which answers you get correct.  Grade yourself however you like but know that if you don’t get a perfect score, you suck.  Good luck! What team won the World Series last season? Brooklyn Dodgers Montreal Expos New York Football Giants Houston Astros   The Cleveland Indians were nominally the subject of one of the best baseball movies ever, “Major League.”  What excellent TV show was based in Cleveland and even had a remake of the song “Cleveland Rocks” by Ian Hunter as a theme? “Joanie Loves Chachi” “Grace Under Fire” “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” “The Drew Carey Show”   The Miami Marlins, under the auspices of Derek Jeter, have once again traded away almost every notable player they had. Which one of the following is actually on the Marlins? Derek Jeter Frank Stallone Tommy DeVito Starlin Castro   Dave Martinez was named as the new manager of the Washington Nationals. What sleepy-eyed SOB did he take over from? Emo Phillips Forrest Whittaker Ben Carson Dusty Baker   The New York Yankees traded for Giancarlo Stanton from the Marlins during the offseason. Does this mean it’s OK to hate them again? Yes Yes Yes Also, yes   The Tampa Bay Rays also traded some of their best players during the offseason, and dsvajnp0advvdasnhp=34grAb…sorry, I nodded off there for a moment. Next question.   Jon Lester, the ace of the Chicago Cubs, had an off year in 2018. During the 2018 season the players had one game where they could wear a nickname on the back of their jersey, and sadly Lester went with “Lester.”  What’s the best nickname for Lester? Johnny Jester Lester is Morester Mo   The Reds play in Cincinnati. The fictional radio station WKRP is also in Cincinnati.  Which character on WKRP in Cincinnati was the coolest? Herb Tarlek Les Nessman Venus Flytrap Johnny Fever   Because I loved WKRP so much, a bonus Cincinnati question: who was hotter, Jennifer Marlowe (Loni Anderson) or Bailey Quarters (Jan Smithers)? Jennifer Marlowe Jan Smithers Really, you can’t go wrong with either one   The Colorado Rockies could be very good this season, and if there is a Baseball God He’ll have them surpass the Dodgers. One of the players on the Rockies goes by “DJ.”  What is his last name? Kool Jazzy Jeff Qualls LeMahieu   The Texas Rangers play in, of all places, Texas. What’s the best thing about Texas? Ted Cruz The heat and humidity Easy access to El Paso Texas bar-b-q   The Seattle Mariners are experiencing the joy of having Jerry Dipoto as GM. I know that’s not a question, I just wanted to gloat a little bit.   The Los Angeles Angels made a big splash in the offseason when they signed the most sought-after Japanese player. When will Albert Pujols’ contract end? After this season 2019 2020 Seemingly never   The Oakland Athletics could be the surprise team this year, or they could end up as sellers at the trade deadline as usual because Brad Pitt played Billy Beane. If Oakland decided to trade their stadium, what would they get in return? A pair of rusty cleats Half of a week-old sandwich A two-peckered goat Herpes   The Dodgers made it to the World Series last year and were one game away from winning it all, but their season ended in perhaps the most heartbreaking way a season can end: losing game seven of the World Series.  Again, I don’t have a question, I just wanted to share that.   According to a recent Forbes ranking, Oriole Park at Camden Yards is the second-best baseball stadium. What stadium is ranked #1? Madison Cube Garden Tropicana Field Angel Stadium AT&T Park (San Francisco)   The Tigers play in Detroit. What is the best thing to come out of Detroit? Kid Rock, ha ha ha Kwame Kilpatrick Sonny Bono Bob effin’ Seger   The New York Mets play at Citi Field in Queens. Who traveled to Queens to find his Queen? Hakeem Olajuwan Hakeem Nicks Hakeem Jeffries Prince Akeem from Zamunda   Minnesota Twins starting shortstop Jorge Polanco was recently suspended for 80 games for violating MLB policy on Performance Enhancing Drugs. Do PEDs make the game better? Probably Most likely Almost certainly Yeah   In 1979 the Pittsburgh Pirates won the World Series. They had really cool hats back then.  Anyway, what song was associated with them that year that later became a staple at drag queen shows? “It’s Raining Men” “That Boy is a Bottom” “My Ding-a-ling” “We Are Family”   What’s the best thing associated with Philadelphia, the home of the Phillies? A statue honoring a fictional character from a movie Cheesesteak sandwiches The Philadelphia Naked Bike Ride Frank Reynolds   What creature does Boston Red Sox starting 2B most resemble? Jason Statham’s younger, slightly “off” brother Napoleon A ferret Pick any animal from the order Rodentia   Toronto is the home of the Blue Jays. What crotchety old musician came from Toronto? Bono Sting Mick Jagger Neil Young   The Braves are from ATL. What does ATL mean? Ass Too Large Above The Law All Time Low Atlanta   San Francisco is ranked as the gayest city in the US, with a 6.2% population rate of LGBT residents. Who was the guest star on the episode of The Simpsons where Homer was afraid that Bart was gay? John Travolta Tom Cruise Brad Pitt John Waters   The White Sox are always the second child to the Cubs in Chicago. What second child listed below is the worst? Jay Leno Stephen Colbert Prince Harry Donald Trump   The Brewers play in Milwaukee. Which of the following is the best fictional thing to happen in Milwaukee? Fonzie jumping the shark Laverne and Shirley waving at a bottle of beer Mork trying to take Richie to Ork Wayne and Garth meeting Alice Cooper backstage   The Arizona D-Backs have a very good RF named David Peralta. What criminally-unpopular TV show that you should be watching has a lead character named Jake Peralta? Cop Rock BJ & the Bear Lucifer Brooklyn Nine Nine   San Diego is famous for its military bases and its proximity to the donkey shows in Tijuana.  Which of the following is an actual player on the Padres? Ralston Schmidt Langston Hughes Headly Lamarr Chase Headley   A few years ago baseball pundits were falling all over the Cardinals for their method of conducting business, which was later revealed to be kinda shady.  What was the name of that method? The ATM Move The Midwest Scramble The Ickey Shuffle The Cardinal Way   And finally, a question about the Kansas City Royals. What state do the Royals play in? Kansas Puerto Rico Louisiana Missoura   And that’s it.  If you really must know, no matter what you think the correct answer for each question is d.  This isn’t subjective.  Enjoy your baseball season.
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AngelsWin.com

 

Tim Mead’s Spring Training Dugout Talk with AngelsWin.com

For AngelsWin.com fans, one of the highlights of Spring Training is when we get to talk with Tim Mead, the Los Angeles Angels’ Vice President of Communications. Commonly known as the “Dugout Talk”, it’s a chance for fans to get to hear from an insider about all the Angels’ offseason efforts and what’s going on in Spring Training. The best part about it for us, the fans, is that Tim doesn’t pull any punches. He answers questions as best and honestly as he can. And, he doesn’t shy away from the tough questions–whether it’s about an offseason transaction or about part of the overall entertainment experience at the stadium. It’s a chance for fans to get their questions directly answered in an unusually candid conversation. Originally this talk started behind the Angels dugout. But, as the Angels’ Spring Training camp grew, and as the media presence expanded, and with the occasional help from the weather, we have often had to relocate to one of the food court areas in Tempe Diablo Stadium. No matter where it’s held, though, what remains constant is the nature of the questions and answers given. One minor program note: At approximately 17 minutes into the recording, there was a minor technical issue that forced some of Tim Mead’s answer to a question to be cut out. Rather than deleting the entire question and answer, we kept the portions that were salvageable because in that portion, Tim gives worthwhile information. So, relax, put your feet up, and enjoy watching Tim Mead’s talk with AngelsWin.com. It’s some of the best baseball you’ll hear. Tim Mead’s Dugout Talk Spring Training 2018 from AngelsWin.com on Vimeo.  
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AngelsWin.com

AngelsWin.com