Monday, July 4, 2016

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By Glen Mckee, Non-Violent Non-Femme and Staff Writer - 

First off, happy 4th of July!  May your day be filled with too much food, too much drink of your choice, and too many explosions.  I started to write this LWIB Saturday evening when the Angels were ahead of the Sox 3-0, and it was a rant about how awful this team was and who was truly to blame for this debacle of a season.  As I got about 500 words into it, two things happened: the Angels scored a buttload more runs, and I realized that an angry rant would give me few opportunities to toss in pics like the one above.  So, I trashed it and got back into my comfortable box, and ultimately everybody will be happier because of it.  So, without further ado, the misery that was last week in Angels baseball.

The bad.  There’s so much bad to go around, once again.  This part is as easy as it is disheartening.  

- The record.  1-5 last week and that doesn’t even tell the whole story.  Somehow, the Angels managed to score 21 runs in a game last week and they still ended up being outscored 38-37 for the entire week.  Yet another microcosm of the season.  On the year the Angels are 33-49.  Only Minnesota, Atlanta, and Cincinnati are worse than the Angels.  One more week like the last two and we might sink lower than one of those three teams.  If you missed it, the title this week is a reference to the following song and the lyrics “Just last night, I was reminded of just how bad, it had gotten, and just how sick, I had become…” and “Third verse, same as the first…”

- Jhoulys Chacin.  Hopefully this will be the last time I type his name, as the Angels finally called Nick Tropeano back up and Trop is taking Jewel’s place in the rotation.  One start last week for Jewels, 4.2 IP, 12 H, 5 ER.  His peanut has been dirty for a while and now he’s in the bullpen, where he can be the next Fernando Salas until either he’s optioned to Triple-A or let go.  One more pic of him, for old time’s sake:

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 Joe Smith.  The guy on the team with the most anonymous name ever returned to action and teased us with a good appearance, and followed up by ruining an attempt at a solid comeback.  In Sunday’s game the Angels had battled back from being down 7-0 to 7-5, and had a good chance.  The Joe got the call, he gave up three runs, and the Angels packed their bags for Tampa before the game was even finished.  Yet another guy in the bullpen with an ERA over 4.00.  It seems like we have as many of those as Hillary has deleted emails.

- Mike Trout.  Trout is gonna make an appearance on both lists this week.  He makes the naughty list for what he did on Friday night.  Top of the ninth and Trout singled with one out.  He represented the tying run at 1B.  He was gabbing with the Sox 1B and smiling.  First, he missed on a passed ball that should have had him at 2B.  Next, Pujols hit a fly ball to deep center, and Trout failed to tag.  This was important because Nava was up next and he hit what the umps ruled a ground-rule double (more on that next) and since Trout was on first he only went to 3B.  Of course, he stayed on 3B as the game ended.  Had he not blown either situation he would have scored.  It’s very frustrating to see a player of Trout’s caliber (as in: top) make mistakes like that.

- The replay umpires.  This is in reference to the ground-rule double above.  Pardon my German but are you Ficken kidding me?  That was obviously fan interference, frighteningly obvious, and yet they didn’t overturn the call.  I guess they just wanted to go home for the night or something, but it was a terrible non-overturn.

- Fernando Salas.  Three appearances last week, 3.1 IP, 4 ER.  He keeps getting sent out there, he keeps giving up runs, and his ERA keeps getting higher – 4.97 right now.  He’s one appearance away from going over 5.00!  Again, indicative of how bad this bullpen is.

- Tim Lincecum.  One game, 4.1 IP, 5 ER.  Another dirty peanut thus far.  Can anybody give me a reason to hope he’ll get better, other than his next start is against the Rays?

- Jered Weaver.  One start, 5.1 IP, 6 ER.  See, it’s not just the bullpen that’s garbage!  Jered has an ERA of 5.50 on the season despite having a shutout a few weeks ago.

The good.  As usual, I could go on and on, and on, with the bad.  Most of it is pitching-related.  Let’s take a look at some of the good that happened last week.

- That one game in Boston.  You remember: the only game we won last week, and hoo boy did they win it.  21 runs, 11 of them in one amazing inning.  That was awesome!  Just for a game, you felt good about the Angels.  Then they went and ruined the good feeling the very next day, because the Angels hate you.

- C. J. Cron.  He hit a grand slam in a losing effort Friday, giving the Angels their only runs.  3 HR on the week, 10 RBI, .478 average.  He just worked his way into the conversation of who the Angels might trade before the deadline.

- Mike Trout.  First off, congrats on getting engaged!  Hope you get a pre-nup, dude.  Anyhoo…he hit .476 for the week and somehow managed only 2 RBI.  Yeah, I dunno how that happened either.

- Albert Pujols.  He hit .409 last week and got 8 RBI (thanks, Trout!) and has his season average up to .252 with a .328 OBP.  When we first signed him those stats would have made us sad, now they make us sorta happy.  Here’s to hoping this hot streak continues.

- Cam Bedrosian.  Despite being the best goddamned pitcher in the bullpen (0.00 ERA last week, 1.24 on the season) he only made two appearances.  He was used less than Salas, people.  Hopefully it was just because he’s being reserved for high-leverage situations.  If Cam was a chick in a bikini he’d look like this:

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The rest.  Only one more week until the All-Star break begins and we get a momentary break from the misery.  The trade deadline is less than a month away, so in a few weeks this team could look a bit different.  The Angels still haven’t played Toronto. I’m still waiting for somebody to PM me with a free Angels ugly sweater cap.   All rightie then!

The week ahead.  Four in Tampa Bay against one of the three teams with a worse record than ours, and three in Baltimore against the AL East-leading Orioles, where you just know Mark Trumbo is gonna crush us.  He’ll be like Mike Napoli except he’s not an asshole.

My predictions versus last week.  I predicted 1-2 versus the Astros and 1-2 versus the Sox. 

Somehow, even though I predicted a terrible week I didn’t predict terrible enough.  Actual results: 0-3 and 1-2 for 1-5 versus my 2-4 prediction.  For the year: 37-40 predicted versus 31-46 actual.

My predictions for this week.  Eff it.  0-7 this week.  If I’m correct I get to celebrate like Morrisey.  If I’m wrong I manage to improve my season total predictions.  It’s like lose-win-win.

Love to hear what you think!

Listen to "A Fish Like This" Tribute song to Mike Trout's Greatness

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