The Los Angeles/California/Anaheim Angels have played almost 60 seasons of baseball. As the baseball world is suspended due to circumstances outside its control, it is time to look back at the history of this organization. There have been many talented players to put on the uniform, and we at Crashing the Pearly Gates wish to highlight the best who have ever represented the Angels. Without further ado, here we go!
#45 – Maicer Izturis
The other, OTHER last Expo, Maicer Izturis (Mighty Maicer, Mighty Mouse, Mice Tits) was acquired with fellow top 100 player Juan Rivera from the Nats for living disaster Jose Guillen. He became a backup player for the Angels for 8 seasons from 2005 to 2012.
Yes, backup, because he never once qualified for batting, (the closest being in 2011 with 494 PA, which was also the the year he played in his most games, at 122). So why does he rank so highly? Consistency is key.
Mighty Maicer wasn’t around for so long because he sucked, far from it. He was the definition of average. Now that may sound like an insult, but this is baseball, and being average is a good thing, especially for 8 seasons. For the Angels, 8 seasons is a very long time.
Despite never really being the starter, Maicer Izturis is one of the most consistent players in Angels history. He is in the top 30 in Angels history in 24 different categories. From accumulation stats such as bWAR (28th) and extra base hits (26th) to rate stats such as OBP (28th) and AB per SO (21st), from luck-based stats like HBP (26th) and triples (27th) or games played (28th) and PA (30th), Maicer is everywhere.
He also played multiple positions, including 3rd when Troy Glaus left and someone needed to be there that knew what he was doing. Maicer played SS when Orlando Cabrera needed days off. He covered 2nd when Howie Kendrick went back down to the minors to fix things. Need someone to pinch hit? Sure. DH because Maicer was on a hot streak? He did it. Pinch run? He would do it. Even go in LF one time.
Mighty Maicer was a fan favorite despite never really starting much. He played 326 games at 3B, 315 at 2B, 222 at SS, doing just what was needed of him with a smile. The Venezuelan was just enjoying the baseball life, as he quietly assumed his role and had fun.
What really stood out besides all of this just being there for years to count on when need be, was his speed. 16th most SB in Angels history. That goes with the 7th best SB percentage, better than that of Figgins and Aybar. Despite only hitting 33 home runs, he still ranks well on the power-speed number for the Angels at 21st.
Mighty Maicer was a consistent player that showed up every so often and knew his role well. Need a sac fly? He delivered as he had the 28th most in Angels history. Needed to create runs? 27th in runs created. Just take a walk? 29th. RBI? 28th. Runs scored? 26th. Double? 22nd.
He never really played well to be a starter, not with how much talent the 2000’s teams had. But when he did play? He did what he needed to do. Which is why he stuck around so long. Above average defense at 3 positions so that in FA or a new prospect came up in the IF it didn’t matter, have Mighty Maicer cover the position that was a weak point.
In wins, Maicer had an OPS of .787 which shows he could maybe be seen as a clutch hitter. He never played enough in a season to be qualified for CLUTCH but he certainly did show up when it counted. Like this time in the 14th. Or this time in the 10th. Need that good defensive play? He got it. Need someone to deny Verlander a no hitter? Mighty Maicer saves the day. Need a 3 run jimmy jack? A double to get Trout home? Score a run on a wild pitch? Get a triple to score Weaver in Arizona so that the Weave can get some rest? He just did it all, with a smile.
Maicer Izturis did have one very good season for the Angels. In 2009, when basically everyone was clicking, so was Mighty Maicer with a 3.7 BWAR season an OPS+ of 109 and batting an even .300. Career best 8 home runs that season too.
Sometimes these rankings seem a bit off, and that is fine. This isn’t just stats after all, it is about what these players mean for this franchise. For us here at Crashing the Pearly Gates (especially Rev since he is responsible for most of the rankings), this is a way to celebrate these players the best we can. For me, he ranks so high because of his impact. We compare players like David Fletcher to him for a reason. Maicer wasn’t flashy or the main guy by any definition, but he was a fan favorite for a reason.
May Mighty Maicer strike again.