I'm a newly registered user but long time reader of this blog. Check out my bio if you want to know my Halo history...
While I agree that losing sucks, and it pains me to see the Angels in the cellar while the Dodgers are fighting for first, the REAL focus should always be "What's best for the team/organization for the long haul"?
By that I mean fielding a team with a chance to win year in and year out and to ultimately win MULTIPLE world championships over the course of the next decade+.
The key to being successful in this way is to have a fruitful and productive farm system (check), and ownership with the wallet to sustain a $100+ mil payroll.
That's only half the battle though. You can have both of these and squander your opportunity anyway. Trading away young talent and watching them flourish on other teams and spending big $ on over 30 past their prime free agents is the sure way to undermine these blessings.
For all his faults, (overcaution, seeming lack of creativity in engineering trades, etc.) Stoneman has done an Excellent job in setting the Angels up for the future. The present may be a little rough, but that's baseball.
Is their anyone on this board who did not see this coming? By "this" I mean a step back as a team (although I admit I didn't expect a step back to last place)??? The writing was on the wall in many respects. For instance:
G.A.'s Arthritic back and bad legs combined with turning 34.
Erstad's slid into mediocrity in 2001, couple that with age and injury and you get....2006 Ersty!
Donnelly can't cheat after getting caught using foreign substances anymore.
Colon coming into the year hurt...and as usual...fat.
D-Mac dealing with injury and Glaus sized expectations.
Not knowing what to expect from a rookie Mathis.
Knowing what to expect from veteran JoMo.
Salmon lucky to have a big league uni on at 38.
But the bottom line here is that this a normal transition phase for any team in any sport: Young, talented yet unproven players will suffer through rough times as they gain experience while aging veterans struggle to squeeze out whatever production they have left in their beat up old bones.
The important thing to remember is this: We have the best owner we could have ever hoped for in Arte Moreno who will spend what's necessary to field a winner. We have a great skipper who commands respect throughout the league....And we have the best farm system in baseball.
2006 is just a dry run for 2008 and beyond.......Let's get Morales, Napoli, Mac, Jered, and Howie some experience under their belts, and wait for the next wave in 08/09 with Wood, Aybar, Arredondo, Adenhart, Marek, Sean Rod., etc. It's never been a better time to be an Angel fan....Really!