Wednesday Halolinks: Angels Road Streak Ends After Scioscia Sticks With Jerome Williams

June 12, 2012; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Angels catcher Hank Conger (16) speaks to starting pitcher Jerome Williams (57) during the eighth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-US PRESSWIRE

Asleep at the wheel edition of Wednesday Halolinks:

  • Here are two articles citing the same thing: Los Angeles Dodgers rally past Los Angeles Angels - FOX Sports. "Angels pitching coach Mike Butcher visited the mound before Rivera drove Jerome Williams' next pitch to left field for a 5-2 lead. It was Williams' 102nd and final pitch." And this: Angels hopes fade into the West - ESPN Los Angeles. "But what about the next batter, righty Juan Rivera? He let Williams stay out there for that one, too, and Rivera ripped a high fastball over the left-field wall on Williams' 102nd pitch for a three-run shot to give the Dodgers a dramatic finish and a 5-2 win at home." Some people are pointing to the fact that Williams was probably tired after throwing 102 pitches and should have never faced Juan Rivera following a 4-pitch walk to Dodgers' catcher A.J. Ellis and game-tying single by Andre Either. In Williams' previous 11 starts, the Angels #4/#5 starter has averaged, coincidentally, 102 pitches. Additionally, Ellis drawing a base on balls isn't that astonishing as he's been put on base 35 times in just over 200 plate appearances this season and is third in the the NL in OBP. Compounding the situation was both Angels' left-handed relievers were unavailable (Los Angeles Angels at Los Angeles Dodgers - June 12, 2012 - MLB.com), else the situation would have been handled differently. As the eighth inning unfolded however, the problem wasn't the pitch count, but rather, how Williams was handled. Williams had pitched a good game up until that point, but we forget, he's started the season as the Angels #5 guy in the rotation. It's one thing to treat your ace, or in the Angels' case, one of their three ace-caliber pitchers, with the confidence they've earned by leaving them in the game. No one would be second-guessing Mike Scioscia with leaving Weaver-Haren-Wilson in the game in that situation, but we're talking about Jerome Williams. It's possible he wasn't tired after throwing 101 pitches. It's quite possible pitch 102 just wasn't any good.
  • C.J. Wilson to the rescue: Angels-Dodgers Preview - Yahoo! Sports. "Wilson (7-4, 2.39 ERA) gives them a great opportunity to get back on track with the AL's second-lowest ERA. He's 3-0 with a 0.64 ERA in his last four starts, with 26 strikeouts in 28 innings and opponents batting .146 against him in that stretch."
  • Two things I've taken away from this post: Los Angeles Angels at Los Angeles Dodgers - June 13, 2012 - MLB.com. The first is how much the Angels have dominated the other LA team, "The neighbors to the south, the Angels, are looking for their fifth consecutive series victory over the Dodgers, who haven't won a Freeway Series since the 2009 season." The other is how cool Wilson is, " In Wednesday's rubber match between the two Interleague rivals, C.J. Wilson gets the ball for the Angels, making his first start in Dodger Stadium. A native of Newport Beach, Wilson didn't grow up a Dodgers fan, but he appreciates what it means to have one of his starts called by legendary Dodger broadcaster Vin Scully. "I wasn't really a Dodgers fan, I was more of a baseball fan -- I went to Dodgers and Angels games," Wilson said. "Vin Scully is the best, too. It's great to be able to listen to him when watching a game. [California] was a great place to grow up a baseball fan." I know there's a debate among the Halos Heaven crowd as to Vin Scully. From "boring" to "best" seems to be the spectrum in regards to Vin. During last night's game, while watching the Dodgers' home broadcast on the MLB Network, my 15 year-old son proved once again why he's the greatest kid in the world (no, really he is. I know every parent says that about their kids, but I right here...trust me). So we're watching the game and he asks, "Who's the guy calling the game?" "Vin Scully", I say. He's thinks for a second and comments, "He's good."
  • I linked to a post yesterday about this, but it bears repeating, Weaver could be back in Angels' rotation early next week - Yahoo! Sports. "If no issues arise, that could put Weaver on track to come off the disabled list and pitch during the Angels' series against the San Francisco Giants in Anaheim next week."
  • Also bears repeating, another interesting FanGraphs post: A Brief Look at Ernesto Frieri’s Fastball - FanGraphs Baseball. "Frieri has gotten a swing and miss on roughly 20% of the fastballs he’s thrown, while the league-average fastball has induced a whiff only about 5% or 6% of the time*. Frieri’s breaking ball, alternately classified as a slider or curve, has gotten whiffs only about 8% of the time — almost half of league average. (*Note: there are indications that Frieri might be throwing two fastballs, a four- and a two-seamer)."
  • Just as long as he does talk like Rickey: DeMarco: 'Give him time, and he'll be Rickey' - NBC Sports. "In fact, Trout possesses, "a significant run tool that few have," in the words of Angels general manager Jerry Dipoto. In scout's lingo, Trout is an 80 runner — the highest grade attainable. He has been timed at just more than 3.5 seconds to first base, which is in Ichiro territory — and Trout is a right-handed hitter."
  • Is Jim Epperd "the guy" or did he replace Mickey Hatcher on an interim basis? Chicago Cubs fire hitting coach Rudy Jaramillo - ESPN Chicago. "He was the Texas Rangers' hitting coach for 15 consecutive seasons. Under Jaramillo, the Rangers led the American League in batting average three times and were in the top five in OPS 10 times."

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