The baseball world focused on the "locking of horns" in the "classic pitcher's duel" as Jered Weaver stomped on the throats of the Detroit Tigers lineup, matching the effort of Doug Fister against the Angels, ending in a 3-1 victory in 10 innings yesterday. "And then, against one of baseball's most potent offenses, and with two of his rotation 'mates on the disabled list, there he was -- seven innings of one-run ball, and back-to-back strikeouts to punctuate it."
But waaaay over in the corner of Fantasy Baseball, RotoWorld jumps on the Mike Trout bandwagon: "Mike Trout went 4-for-5 with a run scored in an extra-inning win over the Tigers on Thursday. It was the eighth four-hit game of his young career. Trout was in the middle of the game-winning rally in 10th inning, as he singled and came around to score on a sacrifice fly by Josh Hamilton. Trout is batting .316 with 13 home runs, 51 RBI, 19 stolen bases, and 57 runs scored through 79 games this season. Once again, he's the ultimate five-category monster in fantasy leagues."
Me? I like any article that takes our aging, creaking, evaporating super hero Albert Pujols and raises his $200 carcass back up atop a pedestal. "Albert Pujols got the biggest hit of the game...Pujols hit a tiebreaking double in the 10th inning and the Angels beat Detroit 3-1 on Thursday for their ninth straight victory over the Tigers...Pujols sent a drive to deep center, where Austin Jackson tried to make a difficult catch with his back to home plate. The ball tipped off the webbing of Jackson's glove, hit the wall and trickled to the ground. 'That ball was crushed,' Scioscia said...the last thing I thought he was going to do is hit it as far as he did." Albert Pujols, monster once again, for a day.
On To Angels Baseball!
- Jered Weaver: Weaver appears to still be stuck on his velocity. In Thursday's game he started out hitting 88mph and carried that into the 3rd, when he topped out at 89mph. But those were few and far between. He tailed off a wee bit and landed back in the 84-86mph range for the balance of his game (through 7), which is where he has been this season. But he did get clocked at 87mph late in his outing, against Miguel Cabrera in the 6th. In summary, Weaver is still an 86mph fastball pitcher in 2013, with the occasional ability to add 1 or 2 mph a couple of times per game.
- Holy Cow!: Prepare yourself for the shock of all shocks?!? Check out this page and look who just happens to be the best at framing pitches in the season known as "2013"...
- Denial: Could it be that EVERYONE in the LAA Front Office is having trouble dealing with the real world? Last week, with the Pittsburgh Pirates in town and local-boy-raised-Yankee-fan-drafted-Pirate Gerrit Cole was on the mound, and torching Halo batters, "...an Angels official in the press box suggested the radar gun at Angel Stadium 'might be a little warm.' But, after the game, Hurdle said he had no reason to doubt the gun was well-calibrated. 'I think it was playing about right,' Hurdle said. 'I think (Jason) Grilli and (Vin) Mazzaro's reads were accurate, (compared to) what they've been throughout the season. So, I think it's a pretty legit gun.' " Deal with it, Front Office Lacky. Cole was completely dominating our hitters.
- Shameful: It's bad enough that the product on the field stinks, that attendance is down, that SoCal fans have a reputation for not giving a shit...and needing to be told when to cheer...etc. But now...THIS?? Unless it's a Verizon iPad dialed in to the Halos Heaven game thread, reading at the game in inexcusable.
- Josh Hamilton: So Hambone had himself a 3-hit game on Wednesday. Next thing we know, The Internet pipes up, again and again, conjecturing that Josh has "turned the page". Really? Uh, with only 4 total hits since June 17th, no.
- Tommy Hanson: I think we can officially declare that the whole Tommy Hanson thing is not going to work out this year, right? I feel for the guy, I really do. But we have baseball games to be winning here and nobody is going to be waiting around for us to get it together. Meanwhile, looking into the future, don't forget that Hanson is a Boras client...
Buy Stuff - Crazy-ass Baseball Find On the Internet:
Visible Trout Model Kit. Because if they can make ugly trout caps, then why the hell not this?
Friday, June 28 @ 5:10 PM, (FS-W / MLB.TV) LA Angels vs. Houston Astros - Minute Maid Park, Houston
(RHP) 5-3 3.36 ERA versus (RHP) 5-7 3.60 ERA
Saturday, June 29 @ 1:10 PM, (FOX / MLB.TV) LA Angels vs. Houston Astros - Minute Maid Park, Houston
(RHP) 1-10 5.26 ERA versus (RHP) 4-2 3.68 ERA
Sunday, June 30 @ 11:10 AM, (FS-W / MLB.TV) LA Angels vs. Houston Astros - Minute Maid Park, Houston
(LHP) 7-5 3.88 ERA versus (RHP) 5-8 4.84 ERA
This Date in Baseball History: 1919 - Carl Mays of the Red Sox pitches 17 innings over both ends of a double header, beating the Yankees in the first game 2-0, and losing the second game to the Yanks 4-1. Boston will then trade Mays to the Yankees a couple of weeks later..........1970 - After 61 years of faithful use, the Pirates play the final games at Forbes Field, sweeping both ends of a double header versus the Cubs...........1976 - On a nationally televised "Monday Night Baseball" matchup between the Tigers and the Yankees, Mark "The Bird" Fidrych throws a one-hitter and gains legendary status as his talking to the baseball antics reach the broader audience..........1987 - With seven games scheduled for this day, American league batters combine to clobber a record 28 home runs. 5 of those all came in the Oakland versus Cleveland contest, where Mark McGwire and Jose Canseco each hit two and Reggie Jackson smoked the 5th.........1989 - The Orioles break ground on Oriole Park at Camden Yards, which will open three years later and redefine the Major League Baseball experience..........2008 - The Angels lose to the Dodgers 1-0 as Jered Weaver and Jose Arredondo combine for an unofficial no-hitter.
Rounding Up The Major League News...
- The Best Reason To Love The Astros: ...would be Naked Gun! With the Angels in Houston this weekend, I couldn't resist pulling up this link for y'all. It aligns 10 under performing MLB teams with classic Hollywood endings. (We Angels fans get, sadly, , "Aguirre the Wrath of God".) The Astros are tabbed with Naked Gun! "The Astros’ season has, so far, served to remind us that baseball can be fun to watch and follow even if we’re not any good at it. This will likely not get better as the season comes to a close. Therefore, I say the Astros’ season will end on any one of these events...Umpires will make awful calls that, upon repeated viewing, will appear hilarious."
- MFY: Remember 10 years ago or so when the Tampa Bay Devil Rays were the doormats of baseball (not to mention the Baltimore Orioles), and the Yankees and Red Sox got to fatten up annually and claim the advantage in the AL Wild Card races year after year? Yeah, well, apparently the New York Times doesn’t.
- MFY, Part 2: It seems as if this week's battle between Brian Cashman and Alex Rodriguez concerning his health might have a hell of a lot more to do with $22 million, than who it is that controls the flow of information to the media. The two sides could be racing against each other in the face of any Biogenesis suspensions, and nobody can truly figure out what would constitute a winning outcome.
- Circus Marlins: It just doesn't stop. The Miami Marlins took Matt Krook with the 35th overall pick in this year's draft. A pretty high slot and a pretty expensive one, too. The recommended bonus for that pick was $1.6 million. That's in real money, not Loria Bucks. Yesterday's news is that Krook failed his physical and is now on his way to Oregon to play college ball, as Miami pulled their offer. We could stop right there are wonder which angle to pick on concerning the ongoing blundering of the Marlins. They are legion, after all. But wait! Keith Law slips in and hints that something else might be afoot. Krook might not have failed any physical after all.
- Unintended Consequences: Larry Granillo up at Baseball Nation takes a look into the trend within baseball away from granting "the neighborhood play", wherein a fielder might not, technically, contact the bag on a play in an effort to avoid personal injury. The reason I bring this up? Well, for one, it's interesting. But, two, it's a lot about Erick Aybar. "In the 2009 American League Championship Series, when Angels' shortstop Erick Aybar never came close to touching the bag on a double-play in the tenth inning of Game 2, the complaint wasn't that second-base umpire Jerry Layne got the call wrong when he signaled "safe" -- it was that he got it right."
Video Of The Week
(Uh, guys, the stadium is on fire. Yes, THE STADIUM!!)
(Trouble viewing the video? Direct link here.)
Father's Day recall: Last Sunday's Father's Day games throughout all of MLB reached their pinnacle in Anaheim...........A new term for Failure Greatness, the 5 strikeout game..........Showboating? Baseball players sure are a pissy lot............In case you missed it, the Brewers pulled out their Polish uni's this past week..........You know how much you hated Jonathan Papelbon, Sphincter Mouth? This is the day you have always waited for..........It IS a Bug's Life..........Thank you Leigh Williams-Teixeira for small favors..........No, it's NEVER too early. Mike Trout is now 90% certain to make the HoF.
And now, being the full service weekend linkage institution that we are, here is the obligatory moment we take out of each Friday...for beer...
Saturday: Beachwood BBQ & Brewing in Long Beach is celebrating their 2 year Anniversary............Stafford Lake Park in Novato will be the Marin County stop for the traveling California Beer Festival..............Cielo Village in Rancho Santa Fe is doing "Cigars & Crafts". And, by "crafts", we don't mean scissors and white paste!.........And Blue Palms Brewhouse in LA will be the site for a Hangar 24 Tap Takeover. And I do have to say that the Hangar 24 Orange Wheat beer is a hell of a lot cleaner, crisper and deeper than that Shock Top stuff I see way too much, everywhere!