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Erick Aybar Charged for the Playoffs

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Aug 22, 2012; Boston, MA, USA; Los Angeles Angels shortstop Erick Aybar (2) throws to first base against the Boston Red Sox during the eighth inning at Fenway Park.  Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-US PRESSWIRE
Aug 22, 2012; Boston, MA, USA; Los Angeles Angels shortstop Erick Aybar (2) throws to first base against the Boston Red Sox during the eighth inning at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-US PRESSWIRE

I am an unabashed Erick Aybar fan and I see him as a critical piece of the Angels charging toward the postseason. Note that when he fractured his toe on a foul ball earlier this season, the Angels turned a 48-30 run into a 4-12 drought.

Here are five reasons why Aybar is the glue that holds this club together...

ONE: Face of an Assassin...
Look at the faces of every Angels player. Which one do you hire to go beat up some dude who pushed your girlfriend for cutting in line in front of him at Target? Probably Bobby Wilson, right? But if you needed to finance an international assassination that involved speedboats violating territorial waters to rid the world of bloodthirsty despot, you know you would want Erick Aybar coolly leaning out starboard with his telescopic site aimed at the head of that billionaire third world oppressor. "Job's done, now get this boat to Detroit..."

TWO: He will take you out to the clubs...
Suppose you win some goofy Angels promotion to spend a roadtrip traveling with the club and hanging out. So after two days in Minneapolis you are bored playing go fish with Ernesto Frieri and talking with Mike Trout about why Springer Spaniels are the best huntin' dawgs for Jersey deer season. You are really bored and homesick. Then Erick Aybar hands you a pair of rhinestone-studded sunglasses, "There's three chicks in the orange limo, pick one for yourself, leave me the other two and make us all a round of Margaritas, I will be out in ten minutes, we goin' to the club tonight, me, you and the girls..."

THREE: Franchise rank...
His 12.3 WAR ranks 20th all time in Angels franchise history. His 5.0 Defensive WAR ranks 14th in club history. We are talking steady as he goes. He is tied for 26th place with Reggie Jackson with 331 runs scored as an Angel. For all of Reggie's prowess, it took Aybar only 67 more Plate Appearances to tie the Hall of Famer. His next regular season triple in an Angels uniform will be his 33rd, giving him sole possession for 4th place in club history. He is currently tied with Adam Kennedy and Mickey Rivers at 32. He ranks 12th in Stolen Bases with 89 despite hi bad base-running reputation.

FOUR: Must make amends...
You think that missing that bunt in the 2008 ALDS haunts him? Well... the Angels were down three games to one. Did you ever hear about the time in the Caribbean World Series when he messed up the play that ended the game? We reported on it at Halos Heaven in 2006, read OUR ARCHIVES and weep for him. If any player wants to come up big in the spotlight after being humiliated ...it is Erick Aybar.

FIVE: Not a bad season...
Do you want the devil you know (.278/.314/.405/.719) or some other idiot who doesn't know the proper way to slap Albert's aching elbow in the postgame high-five celebration to bring mister big back down to being one of the guys. You want Erick Aybar. You want to name your dog after him. You want him because he comes CHARGED for the playoffs.