Game 2 of the doubleheader started off with the Angels as the away team as this is the makeup game from Houston. No hurricane here. Just a heat wave. Still 95 degrees at the start of the game at 7:50 PM.
Dillon Peters took the start and gave up a home run on the second pitch. Then in the second inning he gave up a 3 run home run. A short outing, 1 and 2/3 innings, 4 runs, 3 earned, 3 hits and 2 strikeouts. That unearned run was an error by Justin Upton.
A bullpen game right after having 5 pitchers in the first game of a doubleheader is not good. What is good is Cam Bedrosian. 2 and 1/3 innings of perfect baseball.
No off Day for the Offense
Offensively Mike Trout continued to be on fire. He hit a double and scored in the 4th thanks to a single from Albert Pujols. After a Jo Adell single and a walk to Taylor Ward, Franklin Barreto grounded out with the bases loaded to score Pujols.
In the 5th, even more runs scored with a single by Luis Rengifo, a HBP by Justin Upton, a 2 base non sac fly by Mike Trout, and a Pujols bloop single. It was a tied game.
Jacob Barnes pitched the bottom of the 5th. First hit was a single that was almost caught by Jo Adell. Which was then thrown in and almost got the runner at second. It was weird. An out later and a home run that Jo Adell almost caught. Game of inches and such. 6-4 Astros.
Franklin Barreto airmailed a throw in the 6th, the 3rd error of the game. For once though that didn’t lead to a run and Noé Ramirez got through the inning with no runs scored. 6-4 going into the top of the 7th.
A single by Upton and Trout was up to tie it. Astros said no, and walked him. So Anthony Rendon hit a 3 run home run. And the Angels have come all the way back to lead it 7-6. Victor Rojas called it a walk off, but the Angels were away at the Big A.
Ty Buttrey was in to close the game. First out was a strikeout. But Springer was up next. He hit 2 home runs already this game. But he flew out to Jo Adell instead. A groundout and Ty got the save!
A 4 game winning streak, a double header sweep, and 5 wins vs the Astros this year! A turnaround maybe? Still a long way to go.
Final game vs Astros this season tomorrow at 1PM. After that, the Rangers are the only division opponent left.
See these are the types of wins I was hoping for the other day. Behind in the score only to win within the last few innings. This is the clutch potential this team has and despite our pitching issues, the hitting showed up and did their job big time. Despite the bad day, Canning stayed in it and powered through 4 runs but only walked two, I saw a few of the at bats before the rest of his runs scored, there were some major borderline calls made that went the wrong way leading up to the walks and I felt he was robbed but that’s just me. Still good games by the hitters and pitchers who did not give up runs.
Also, Canning made the bonehead decision to call off the catcher and try to catch a popup himself. Without that mental error, he saves 1 walk, 2 hits, and 2 earned runs and ends up with a better line.
Feels great to stick it to the cheaters. Springer, Gurriel and Reddick are free agents at the end of this year, with Correa, Greinke and Verlander hitting the market after next year. I suspect Bregman (and Altuve if he waives 10/5 rights) will be traded at the end of next year to kick off the Astros’ next tank cycle.
Sums up pretty much exactly how I feel.
I believe Trout just got .5 WAR in 2 games and put himself squarely into competition for the MVP. With 15 HRs he’s more a likely MVP than Rendon although he could easily be overlooked in favor of Nelson Cruz since the Twins are headed to the playoffs.
Well.. who knows, right?
Our odds are extremely poor, as we know. Realistically, to give ourselves a chance, we probably need 32 wins. Which means we’d have to go 16-3 to finish off the season.
I suppose the one thing that makes this at least in the smallest realm of possibility is that our schedule is rather light moving forward (7 games vs TEX and 3 vs AZ, both of whom are pretty bad. 2 vs SD will be hard, and while we have 3 against the Dodgers, they will have likely locked everything up by then and will just be trying to ensure good health to finish their season).
Very unlikely, but for now, I just want to see them play well. The tanking thing was interesting, but in truth, there’s just too much talent on this team to be one of the worst two teams in baseball.
The last half sentence of your post is very true and in fact DOES make the tank more difficult. With Simba back and playing well we have three guys who are the best at their positions (Simba defensively and Trout and Rendon overall) in MLB.
Those guys make it hard to argue that the Angels lose because of a “lack of talent.”
If we somehow did manage to tank and add that ace we could be right there in the running for the big prize, or could be, if a couple other things fall our way, such as Ohtani staying healthy and becoming a top-flight arm (while returning to form offensively), and both Buttrey and Robles start pitching to their potential.
Realistically, to do tanking well you would have to sit Trout and Rendon for a large number of games the last month, and I don’t think either guy would go for that.
Both of you are making great points. The problem with the tank is this team isn’t THAT bad. It’s probably a .500 team that was acting like the worst team in baseball. I mean, 7 guys below .200 in our lineup? That’s nuts.
Regression to the mean was inevitable.
Unfortunately, we probably still miss the playoffs. Just too deep a hole.
Watch the games and see what happens, I guess…
If we aren’t going to tank, and it definitely looks like we’re not, then we might as well try to formulate a plan to try to be competitive next year…
So, if we aren’t gong to rebuild, then I’d like to see the following:
It will be a team with holes still, but potentially, we can run out something like:
Fletcher SS, Trout CF, Rendon 3B, Ohtani 1B, LF Adell, RF Marsh, DH Pujols/Upton, C Stassi, 2B Rengifo/Jones/Barreto
Rotation: Bauer, Bundy, Canning, SP3/4 trade, Barria/Suarez/Sandoval/Naughton, Ohtani** (Detmers and Rodriguez both in the minors, but should be future SPs who aren’t too far off)
The key to all of this will be if Ohtani can return and pitch like he did in his first year with us. If he can, then a “playoff rotation” of Bauer, Bundy, and Ohtani as 1-3 could make us a pretty good contender.
Assuming we somehow get the Ace (Bauer or sb at his level) I agree that Ohtani will be the pivotal question. That’s why I mentioned it.
If Adell continues to develop (I suspect he will, as his good work habits and positive attitude to taking coaching have already helped improve his play in the OF) and Fletch can at least come close in 2021 to what he’s doing this season I think we’ll be fine offensively, though as you say not without holes. Even imperfect teams can sometimes win it all. In 2002 our SP was not all that great, but we had the best offense in baseball and the best bullpen in the AL. That was enough.
But I agree that in 2021 the SP will be key. And the bullpen will have to be MUCH better. And I think they can be.
The other thing we’ll have to focus on is giving up two out runs. The Angels have given up more two out runs than any team in baseball. This I think is a mental thing. Our pitchers have to be mentally tougher. Having continuity at catcher will help too.
I think we should pick two guys and stick with them all year. No more playing musical chairs with the catching position — it hurts the staff too much. It really does.
If it is Stassi and Benboom fine. Or Stassi and Briceno. But we can’t keep changing there.
I do agree that Bauer would not be a problem. He’s a bit of a loose canon with his mouth but I don’t think he’s a selfish guy. Plus, Maddon is good with different personalities. I think he would lay the groundwork for a good working relationship.
Finally, Bauer has pretty good mechanics, so hopefully this would contribute to his staying healthy.
Let’s go Angles!!!
We’ve just gone 7-3. If we do it again and then finish 7-2 we’ll be at .500.
And if that seems improbable you and I agree.
Right now we’re sitting at 7th in the draft, about where Adrian Del Castillo could be picked…a catcher. There’s Rocker, Leiter and then “who knows”.
Park the tank and hop on the steamroller
Trout’s been on fire since the Fangraphs article.
A lot of almost for Adell in the 5th
Great headline. Loved Vic’s call tonight.
Skip right into the playoffs
Don’t think so.
Celebrate the win
We’re just better than the Astros. That’s all there is to it.
Can’t hide banging trashcans in an empty stadium
When Barreto starts the Angels Win!
23 game winning streak who says no?
Every 23 game winning streak starts off with a 4 game winning streak
Mike Trout now leads the AL in runs and home runs, is second in RBIs, WAR and wRC+.
Way more fun to win than to be satisfied with loses to potentially gain a draft pick. I say keep winning.
So anybody predict this crazy day? Wow. So many heroes. Nice to see this team actually play to its potential for a change.
haha 6 games back, no chance, but what if…???
might as well win games! 🤷🏻♂️
We are about to have a 10 game winning streak to give us hope. Then lose like 10 of 12 because this is Angels baseball
Stop thinking small. 23 game winning streak!
Ha ha yeah, we win so much we’re 3 back with 7 to play and we go 1-6.
Ya know, like trAdition and all…
I’m rooting for the 23 game winning streak!
If there is anything we DO know about Angels baseball in the last decade it is that things don’t stay good for very long.
I mean, why not?