Thursday, April 9, 2009

Halos Offer Horrific Offense

Angels 4, Oakland 6
Angels 4, Oakland 6

During the seventh inning last night, the Angels were up 4-0 and I was looking forward to coming here and talking about Wednesday's game was really just Tuesday's game with role reversal. Oakland's Trevor Cahill had a shaky start but ultimately got away with it because the Angels couldn't buy a hit with runners in scoring position, while the Angels' Nick Adenhart leaked baserunners all over Anaheim but emerged victorious because the A's kept hitting into double plays or popping out.

But, as it stands, the Angels gave up 3 runs in each of the final two innings, ruining my nifty compare/contrast idea and artfully illustrating why watching west coast baseball in Boston sucks. The game finished at 1:15 AM, which would have been manageable if the Angels had won instead of choking up a four-run lead with 6 outs to go.

This is the first week of the season, so you won't find me jumping off any bridges, but the fact remains that games in April count just as much as games in September. Nobody's expecting the Angels to jump out to a 10-game lead in the West with their top three starters out for the month, but .500 would be just peachy.

I'm a little annoyed with Scioscia's game management. Jose Arredondo almost never pitches multiple innings, yet Scioscia decided to leave him in for the eighth, where he promptly allowed two A's to reach and ultimately shared some blame in the meltdown. I had this much to say on Halos Heaven:

Here's my issue. The second a closer blows a save, he should be done. If you’re only gonna bring him in to get the save, then he comes out the second he blows it. Dumb roster management is one thing, but if you’re going to be dumb, be consistent.

Oh yeah, it’d help if

1.) we could score runs like literally every other team in the major leagues.
2.) our pitcher would take command and throw a ball to first base instead of letting the catcher handle it.
3.) our third baseman would follow the fundamental rule of Little League and get the out over the riskier play at home to save a run.
4.) our players knew how to lay off fastballs at the eyes.

But it’s the third game of the season, so really, no big deal. Except that it’s annoying as hell to watch the Angels on the East Coast, so it’s doubly irritating when they manage to suck at 1 AM.

#1, of course, references the Angels' still-marginal offense, something not helped by Vlad Guerrero going 0-4 (see #4). #2 is a shot a Brian Fuentes for failing to pick up an infield "single" hit by Kurt Suzuki and throw to first to end the game. And, finally, #3 is when Chone Figgins threw home without a force play at the plate to try and save a run during the eighth. Naturally, Napoli dropped the ball, the run scored, and no out was recorded.

The teams play again tonight, with another Athletic making his major league debut in Brett Anderson, and the Angels actually fielding a regular starter in Jered Weaver.

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