To quote Ed Harris from Apollo 13: "On the contrary sir, I believe this will be our finest hour."
Too many people have posted on the bad of this season - so allow me a brief moment to wax on the GOOD things about the Angels 2011 season and why I believe they will make the playoffs whilst trailing Texas by 2.5 games with 21 games left:
The Starting Rotation: Weaver and Haren have carried the team on their shoulders for the entire season. Santana woke up and is delivering better than average starts, Pineiro seems to have come out of his funk and all of a sudden some kid (cause I'm 38) named Jerome Williams has given the Angels an option as a #5
Relief: Downs is healthy and is a great bridge to the 9th inning. As for the rest, I'll call it addition by subtraction - Bobby Cassevah and Garrett Richards/Williams are keeping the ball out of the hands of Rodney.
Offense: More Trout, less Wells. More Wilson/Conger, less Mathis. For those of us who think that all Soch does is pick his lip, the guy is making decisions and managing. After his sit-down with Abreu and Wells, not only is he following through with his threat of playing Trout, it lit a fire under the vets (enough for them to contribute something)
And raise your hand if you thought Bourjos would be hitting .270+ with 10 HR?
Sorry, I forgot to mention the replacement for the power-hitting 1B - the one who's a favorite for the ROY
Defense: More Trout, less Wells. More Wilson/Conger, less Mathis - enough said
The schedule: IF the Angels can survive the Yankees, the schedule suggests the team will pull into the final series of the season within 1-2 games of each other.
And even IF Texas takes the division - how many of you REALLY thought the Angels would be this good coming into the 2011 season. I figured that 2012 would be their year, so in my mind - we're playing with house money:
They re-signed Weaver, got rid of B. Wood, are FINALLY shedding GMJ's contract, found a power-hitter in Trumbo (btw, Mike Schmidt was a career .267 hitter) and got an early glimpse of 5-7 years of Gold Glove OF in Trout and Bourjos.
There are a lot of holes, but there's no reason to think this group can't win the West.