After spending this past weekend in the valley of the sun, I caught up on some Angel's baseball and Spring Training. I thought that I would offer my observations and tidbit information that I believed to be interesting.
For what its worth I will give all notable player's a player- by- player bullet point statement from what I gathered in this weekend games. I hope all you enjoy!
Chris Iannetta- mainly stayed with the pitching staff all weekend, seemed rather quiet compared to some other players. Nonetheless pretty friendly to all the fans, gave autographs to all who wanted them.
Hank Conger- also mainly stayed with pitching staff, also much more talkative and friendly to the fans. In the three games he played Conger completely raked. Bat looks solid; defense was also good as well.
Albert Pujols- No sign of Albert the first game as he was nowhere to be found. But I did catch him taking BP the last day I was in Tempe and he was completely crushing the ball, peppering the outfield grass with line drive homeruns. He too signed a few autographs for mainly for the kids.
Howie Kendrick- Kendrick only stayed in the stadium this weekend taking BP, and fielding drills. His swing is the same and fielding hasn't changed a bit. Never did see him give an autograph or talk to the fans.
Erick Aybar- One of the few regulars to play in early games this spring. He never batted anywhere but the second spot and seemed to thrive there. He hit a complete rocket down the line in the first game and his defense was exceptional. He was one of the most talkative players on the field during practice, joking with Callaspo and Pujols. Scioscia was giving him a bad time for trying to hit HR's during BP.
Alberto Callaspo- Didn't see much of Callaspo this weekend except for batting practice on Monday. He was overly excited for hitting a HR during BP after Pujols and Kendrick were teasing him.
Bill Hall- His jersey number choice of "0" for some reason intrigued me not sure why though. Hall showed some versatility by playing third and first, although his defense is shaky his bat can do the talking.
Mike Trout- Trout was the center of attention; fans really adore him and his work ethic. Funny to see his increase of fans from this year compared to 2011. Never seemed to sign any autographs, or talk to the fans much. It looks like he is taking the Albert Pujols style of work ethic. He also looks like a Tank with his added weight and left off where he started from last year with a hit in his first AB.
Peter Bourjos- One of the main players I kept my attention to. As we all know his defense and speed are off the charts and they were seen this weekend (going first to third on wild pitch). But what shocked me was his patience at the plate, in his first two games he had I believe three walks and two hits. As I see it things are looking up for P-Bo
Josh Hamilton- He was in the same boat as Pujols during BP, absolutely crushing the ball. The ball completely sounds different when it comes off his bat. He was probably also the friendliest of players, signing autographs for all the kids and about 50 people altogether. He did get annoyed with some autograph dealer who I guess according to Josh himself has 60 of his autographs over the last three years, as Josh wanted to focus on the kids.
Vernon Wells- From what I saw in the game was a difficulty to drive the ball hence the pop up in his first game. Also in BP he was constantly hitting pop ups right over the shortstop.
Mark Trumbo- A lot of foul balls off to the right side, both during BP and the game. Either he trying to focus on opposite field hitting or his timing is still a tad late. Nonetheless he still hit his crazy far HR's and played mainly first base this weekend.
Jered Weaver- Seemed to carry this different swagger this year, seems more focused and more vocal from what I saw in practice. He joked with the fans and signed a couple autographs here and there.
C.J. Wilson- Probably the most talkative player on the Angels, he signed every autograph anyone wanted all the way from the practice field to Diablo stadium. He also had conversations with those people he signed autographs for.
I'll combine the next three starters.
Vargas, Hanson, Blanton- you could sense that they were new, as not many fans knew who they were and they were only focused on their training and conditioning.
Ryan Madson- while shagging saw him throwing a ball with his left hand, not pretty at all. Told me he still needs to work up his arm strength in his right arm, but he is focused and ready eager to go, but doctors have not cleared him all the way. He was actually really friendly and eager to actually get to know the fans and talk to them.
I'll combine the rest of the bullpen
Jepsen, Frieri, Burnett, Downs, and Williams- After not seeing much of the rest of the bullpen, I assume they were also working on strength and conditioning.
Other Notable Players
Chad Cordero- Really nice seeing him vying for a comeback, and his stuff looked solid after giving up that first Homerun
Kaleb Cowert- Bat will be there, has a solid level swing from both sides of the plate, but defense looks real shaky at times.
- Really weird to see Mike Hampton and Omar Vizquel as Angel coaches, hopefully it helps the younger players.
- The Weather was completely unpredictable, cold one day, windy the next, and warm the last.
- The minor league fields are where it's at for foul and homerun balls as there are only about a handful of fans that wind way down there.