The Angels have a terrible bullpen and four days left to fix it before the beginning of the 2013 season.
You know the baptism scene at the climax of the first Godfather movie? The associates of the other mob families are offed one by one. Well maybe the Angels are not there yet, perhaps Mike Scioscia woke up this morning with a horse head in his bed after reliever David Carpenter blew open a spring training game with two outs in the inning, surrendering a home run for the second straight appearance.
The Angels acquired three relief pitchers today.
Like James Franco and his minions in Harmony Korine's fabulous Spring Breakers film repeating endlessly through the movie SPRING BREAK... SPRING BREAK... we as Angels fans seem to be in unison with the front office mindlessly looking at the worst bullpen in recent memory and deafly singing SPRING TRAINING... SPRING TRAINING...
Well, someone woke up from a cinematic day dream and his name was Jerry Dipoto.
They traded reliever Steve Geltz to the Rays for Dane De La Rosa, they acquired Elvin Ramirez from the Mets for "cash considerations" (I'm gonna make you an offer you can't refuse) and the signed free agent Mark Lowe who had not caught on with the pitching-rich Dodgers or idiot Rangers.
Do you know how many pitchers have thrown a pitch in a Cactus League game for the team prior to this acquisition? 51.
The Angels need to find five starting pitchers out of 51 arms, seven of whom are practically tattooed with the words "Starting Pitcher". So out of 46 suited up invitees, draftees and signees the Angels cannot seem to get any relief ease.
Ernesto Fireiri has thrown nine innings with a 7.00 ERA
Scott Downs has allowed 7 hits in 5.2 IP but Kevin Jepsen has been even more charitable, allowing 9 hits in 5.0 IP.
Of relief pitchers with at least 4 Innings Pitched, guess who has the lowest ERA? Steve Geltz (2.25 in 4.0 IP), the guy Dipoto traded today!
Matt Shoemaker had a 2.84 ERA in 6.1 IP but it is only spring stats while David Carpenter gets enough rope to hang out to dry surrendering 13 hits in 10.2 Innings Pitched.
The bullpen looks to be led by Closer Ernesto Frieri until Ryan Madson is 100%, Sean Burnett (he of the underwhelming Spring), a terrible-all-the-time Downs, a ready-to-disappoint Kevin Jepsen and ...well ...uhh ...how about Garrett Richards - you know, the starter with a 1.62 ERA this spring who should be starting and Jerome WIlliams the starting pitcher with an ERA of 14.00 in 9.0 Innings Pitched.
Oh and our savior Carpenter. Sorry, that combo has been taken.
So Jerry pushed the panic button today and the 40-Man roster is suddenly a jumble of bullpen possibilities. The only question now is when does Jerry Corleone confront his Abe Vigoda, his Moe Green?