This is the next in our series of getting to know the guys at Halos Heaven who deliver the goods for you. Today it is occasional postgame columnist and perennial commenter LINKBRUIN...
WHO WAS THE FIRST ANGELS PLAYER YOU DECIDED WAS "YOUR GUY"?
I grew up in Palm Springs, so I got to see the Angels' single A affiliate for a couple years until they moved to Elsinore. At that time, Garret Anderson was coming up in the farm system. I remember seeing him and instantly thinking that the Angels had found someone like Ken Griffey Jr (I was 6 or 7, cut me a little slack.) His swing was silky smooth, and I even tried hitting from the left side to emulate Garret. 1995 was the first year I really followed the big club start to finish. A lot of this had to do with GA's call-up, and some of it also had to do with finally having the attention span to sit and watch an entire major league game. My dad had always been a fan; I'm sure he was happy to finally get the chance to sit and watch the game without one of his kids begging to turn on cartoons. 1995 probably was the worst year to begin really being a fan, but I loved GA and I think my upbringing well-equipped me for disappointment. I still wish Arte would have signed GA to a 1-day contract, so he could have retired an Angel.
WHO IS YOUR FAVORITE CURRENT ANGEL AND WHY?
It's probably a toss-up between Jered Weaver and Torii Hunter. I gravitate towards Weaver because I always seem to like pitchers more. The fact that he's a so-cal native, completely dominating, and a pretty cool dude only makes it easier. I think his tribute to Adenhart every time he started in 2009 cemented it. Torii is my other favorite because of his infectious personality and his flair for the dramatic in the outfield. He's gotten a little slower, but his move to RF for Bourjos last year only made me like him more.
WHICH SIDE OF THE "STATS VS CHEMISTRY" DEBATE ARE YOU ON AND WHY?
I think they're both sides of the same coin. I like stats that confirm what my eyes tell me, and I also like the interesting new perspectives they provide. Math has been one of my stronger suits, and I like the quantitative analysis current trends in sabermetrics provide. However, I think chemistry and streaky play (both good and bad) are very real and cannot be left out of a qualitative analysis of any team. The best teams mesh together well and fill up the stat book. There's a place for both, and I don't think the divide between the two is necessary.
PICK A SONG FOR THE ANGELS TO REPLACE BUTTERCUP WITH?
I actually like "Buttercup," but I hate it as a 7th inning stretch song. It needs to be a song that people feel comfortable singing in a large crowd and hopefully not one about a loser. The more popular the song the better; a song by some underground metal group that also happens to be from Orange County or a song that conveniently has Angels in the title but no one has heard of it are terrible ideas. These are not OMG BEST SONGS EVAH!!! nor do they really reflect my tastes in music, but I think they would do well as a 7th inning song. "Don't Stop Believing" by Journey, "Bohemian Rhapsody" by Queen, "I Got You Babe" by Sonny & Cher, "Don't Stop" by Fleetwood Mac, "Livin' On A Prayer" by Bon Jovi.
IF YOU WERE IN CHARGE OF THE ANGELS SUMMER CONCERT SERIES, NAME THE PERFORMER YOU BREAK THE BANK TO GET.
Reincarnate John Lennon and George Harrison and host a The Beatles reunion. I'd do the same for Freddie Mercury and Queen. Raising the dead would really require breaking the bank, and I would love the chance to truly see these bands live...well I guess undead in this case. If this had to be grounded in reality, I would break the bank for either Muse or Blink-182.
SAY SOMETHING BALLSY / CONTROVERSIAL FOR US TO REMEMBER YOU BY...
I think it would be cool to work for ESPN. I'm ok with selling my soul to ignore the Angels--sounds like a normal job or marriage anyway.