FanPost

The Greatest Angels Team Ever


Many of us here on HH have been Angels fans for a majority of our lives. Thus, we've seen some teams that we've wondered: What could they have done? (Of course, 2002 is the lone exception, because we SAW what they could do.)

The Angels have fielded 50 different teams over 50 seasons. Eight of them won the AL West, one won the AL Wild Card, and the other 41 sat in either unfortunate circumstances, pure futility, or a combination of both.

This begs the question: Which Angels team, since 1961, is the greatest of all-time?

(All statistics listed below are courtesy of Baseball Almanac.)

We must first consider the obvious: Any Angels team that finished under .500 is likely NOT the greatest to have played. If you do the math, this leaves 23 teams to think about. From there, we know that 9 of them made the playoffs, leaving 14 other non-playoff, above- or at-.500 teams to wonder about: 1962, 1964, 1967, 1970, 1978, 1984, 1985, 1989, 1991, 1995, 1997, 1998, 2000 and 2006.

The best way to resolve this, without going completely sabermetric (I'll leave that to BigGame48, he's more into WAR than I am), is a tournament. And, thanks to WhatIf Sports, we can do that!

Including the 9 playoff teams and 14 non-playoff, .500-or-higher teams would make 23, as we know, and that would be quite a tricky tournament to work out. So, out of the 14 non-playoff teams, let's take the 7 higher winning percentages:

1) 1989 California Angels: 91-71 (.562)
2) 1985 California Angels: 90-72 (.556)
3) 2006 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim: 89-73 (.549)
4) 1995 California Angels: 78-65 (.538)
5) 1978 California Angels: 87-75 (.537)
6) 1970 California Angels: 86-76 (.531)
7) 1962 Los Angeles Angels: 86-76 (.531)
8) 1998 Anaheim Angels: 85-77 (.525)
9) 1967 California Angels: 84-77 (.522)
10) 1997 Anaheim Angels: 84-78 (.519)
11) 2000 Anaheim Angels: 82-80 (.506)
12) 1964 Los Angeles Angels: 82-80 (.506)
13) 1984 California Angels: 81-81 (.500)
14) 1991 California Angels: 81-81 (.500)

So, for the old-fashioned folks out here, we have 1989, 1985, 2006, 1995, 1978, 1970 and 1962 as our final entries into this tournament. Now, for seeding the teams, I'll once again use winning percentages:

1) 2008 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim: 100-62 (.617)
2) 2002 Anaheim Angels: 99-63 (.611)
3) 2009 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim: 97-65 (.599)
4) 2005 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim: 95-67 (.586)
5) 2007 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim: 94-68 (.580)
6) 1982 California Angels: 93-69 (.574)
7) 2004 Anaheim Angels: 92-70 (.568)
8) 1986 California Angels: 92-70 (.568)
9) 1989 California Angels: 91-71 (.562)
10) 1985 California Angels: 90-72 (.556)
11) 2006 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim: 89-73 (.549)
12) 1979 California Angels: 88-75 (.543)
13) 1995 California Angels: 78-65 (.538)
14) 1978 California Angels: 87-75 (.537)
15) 1970 California Angels: 86-76 (.531)
16) 1962 Los Angeles Angels: 86-76 (.531)

The even seeds will take the top half of the bracket, while the odds are on the bottom (giving 2008 "home-field advantage," if you will). The matchups:

ROUND ONE
(16) 1962 Angels
vs.
(2) 2002 Angels

(14) 1978 Angels
vs.
(4) 2005 Angels

(12) 1979 Angels
vs.
(6) 1982 Angels

(10) 1985 Angels
vs.
(8) 1986 Angels

(9) 1989 Angels
vs.
(7) 2004 Angels

(11) 2006 Angels
vs.
(5) 2007 Angels

(13) 1995 Angels
vs.
(3) 2009 Angels

(15) 1970 Angels
vs.
(1) 2008 Angels

And, rather than burn a FanPost for every result (which I'd rather not do), or than putting all results in THIS post, I'll be putting each round's results in the comments--and, by the way, feel free to comment yourself. Who do you think comes out on top? Do you think the 2011 Angels will someday factor into this discussion? Do you think that any team was left out of the discussion or unrightfully included?

This Fan-Post is authored by an independent fan. Tell us what you think and how you feel.

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