Arte Moreno has a history of meddling in his team’s baseball operations and we the fans have cheered him on in this way too often to rage at him when he pulls out of a trade that is taking too long to complete even when it is the stupidest possible thing he could do.
Leading up to the 2004 offseason Moreno signed free agents Bartolo Colon, Kelvim Escobar, Jose Guillen and Vladimir Guerrero. Under Disney management it took Bill Stoneman more than a week to acquire Ron Gant at the trade deadline in July of 2000, layers of bureaucracy stopping him in his tracks. The Moreno flair for billboard pizzazz unleashed hope for a dynasty in Anaheim for the first time since the saddlebag emptiage of Gene Autry embracing 1970s free agency and signing as many big names as wanted on board in Anaheim.
We loved his meddling then.
When he greenlighted signing Steve Finley and Gary Matthews Jr. was he meddling in going after the big name free agent that grabbed headlines, looked good on billboards and sold jerseys or was he just supportive of his GM in building the best team?
There are more examples of the Angels grabbing for the offseason’s big brass ring and finding that it was fool’s gold long before the All Star balloting had begun. How many of them have Arte’s fingerprints on them and how many he sat by while a general manager “showed ‘em what he got” we will never know.
My rule of thumb was if there is a press conference and jerseys available the next day it was Arte’s deal: Pujols, Nibbler Wilson, Hambone all vying here to be the lowest of the lowlights. When there were four pitchers signed as free agents after the 2012 season (Joe Blanton, Sean Burnett, Tommy Hanson and Ryan Madson) the awkwardly silent presser and lack of star wattage showed a deference to the new GM then, right? So that quadruple bust… we don’t blame him for letting his baseball people do the baseball work, do we?
And so reports that Arte meddled in a rumored-as-fact trade this weekend out of nothing but apparent ego at being made to wait for his table enrage the Halosphere, those of us who have been in this nightclub since he walked in the door aren’t surprised at all. He does so many good things that we just freeze up when he sabotages things.
We love the genius Arte Jekyll who brought the cure for an ailing middle-market franchise with him from Arizona. But we hate Meddling Hyde who could have not traded Napoli for Wells and not signed Josh Hambone and probably had his second decade of division titles with those two simple Non-Moves.
We the fanbase watch as every asslicker on Twitter vying for a press pass lets the madness of Meddling Hyde go ignored while they pop the champagne for Arte Jekyll buying the parking lot. This is what coverage of the team online has been reduced to.
Well not here, not now. Sorry Mister Moreno, but the Rev is back and the crew at this blog is crashing the Pearly Gates party. After a lost decade, we demand discipline from Arte Jekyll as we are sick of Meddling Hyde.