Regression to the mean is a phrase which most baseball fans/analysts immediately assume means "getting worse." But when a team is batting 1 for 33 with runners in scoring position* and 2 out, they are regressing to the mean when they fire off four straight hits with two outs and RISP. This, by the way, occurred in the sixth inning, when the Angels scored all five of their runs.
I've mentioned the basic requirement of 5 runs/game for consistent winning, but Joe Saunders was brilliant out there. He pitched 7 innings, giving up only a single run on an Adrian Beltre groundout. He had an incredibly nasty strikeout courtesy of the changeup to Wladimir Balentien with the bases loaded in the fourth inning, the only inning he was ever really in danger. I've said it before and I'll say it again: thank goodness for Techman Joe Saunders.
Aside from the sixth inning, the Angels offense looked pretty crappy, despite putting up 10 hits in the game. Vlad Guerrero was out with a pec injury, potentially sidelined for weeks, but hopefully just days. In his place was Gary Matthews Junior, good for solid defense in right and a RISP2 hit. Howie Kendrick went 0-5 and should probably be placed somewhere outside the 2-hole until he figures out how to hit a fastball again.
The Angels play at 5:10 Pacific today in Minnesota, and I think I speak for all of us when I say I'm happy to be getting the hell out of Seattle.
*Steve Physioc is a hack idiot broadcaster. Of course, you've heard this before, but he's picked up a new trait: In addition to being unable to stop speaking, he now picks one statistic and repeats it as much as possible. For example, he mentioned that Seattle starter Chris Jakubauskas had thrown 15 of his 17 pitches for strikes. He then repeated this statistic (17 of 19! 19 of 21!) after every pitch until the Angels were out of the inning. Once he got tired of that stat, he started with the "Angels are 1 for 33 with runners in scoring position and two out," following with "1 for 34!" and "1 for 35!" or whatever the real numbers really are. Can we please fire this idiot?
- The Stanley Cup playoffs are in action. I watched a little of the Canadiens/Bruins game and a lot of the Sharks/Ducks game. The Sharks, in particular, have to be the unluckiest team outside the Northeastern Huskies. I've never seen so many posts, crossbars, and bad bounces, and they held a 17-6 shot differential at one point. Crazy.
- The Lakers play Utah on Sunday at noon Pacific. While the team, the city, and even the Jazz coach overlooks this series, I'll be watching nervously. My playoff curse is in effect.
- I'm guessing Ainge just found out about Garnett. Too bad for the Celtics, but I'm guessing they're gonna have KG burst out of a tunnel and start nailing threes. Because the Celtics are cheaters.
- Ba dum, ba dum bum ba bum, we suck!
- I've been eating like three or four bags of this weird freeze-dried fruit lately. They sell it at 7/11, and even though it's not very good, it's still novel, so I keep buying it. It's pretty weird when it gets stuck in your teeth and then turns into real fruit again.
- For those of you who are particularly bored, I do write a blog for my "job" at the moment.