Angels 3 Rangers 1
Coming out of Spring Training this year, and heading into Opening Day, two of the biggest concerns on Halos fans' minds were A) what's going to happen with left field and B) Is Jered Weaver done? Some nagging injuries in Tempe, more associated to getting older as opposed to any one incident, and a tough time getting the ball above the 80mph mark in some games made us all question how much Weaver had left in the tank. If that tank was empty at some point, today was proof that it ain't empty any more; it's brimming with Haterade and doubts, and it fueled Weaver into a beauty of a 2016 season debut.
If there is one place Jered Weaver can thrive, it's at home, and today you had that good luck charm side-by-side with his desire to prove a bunch of people wrong. It would prove to be a cocktail worth ordering up for the remainder of the season, as Weaver cruised through six innings against a Rangers team that proved to be trouble the last couple nights for Garrett Richards and Matt Shoemaker. The cantankerous Angels arm threw for six innings, giving up six hits, one earned run(a homer from Rangers rookie Nomar Mazara, in his first career game), one walk and four strikeouts.
His stuff was about what you'd expect, except...it ended up working. That home stadium cooking was no doubt a huge help, but Weaver got by with his usual mastery of the off-speed and breaking ball stuff. And while his fastball was as slow as you'd expect(anywhere from 79 to 84 mph), it's location was mostly on point; if you're going to throw slow, at least throw accurate, and that's what Weaver did, and did with success.
The Angels managed to scrape together some runs today, too, despite their many attempts at derailing any big, fun scoring blitzes. The good news is that Mike Trout was the hero at the plate today, but the bad news is he did it in the most boring way possible. First, with men on second and third, he managed to drive in a run on a ground-out to SS. In the eighth inning, he put another on the board via bases loaded sac fly. Albert Pujols was responsible for the other Angels run, an RBI single from him in the third.
Don't let that 3-1 score fool you; the Angels lineup was just as frustrating as ever today, grounding into double plays not once, not twice but thrice, same as last night. Six GIDP in two days is quite the dubious and disgusting streak, a bad habit that they need to drop ASAP or not even the friendliest of friendly Halos fan is going to be able to hold back the boos this year.
Luckily for the rally killing parts of the lineup, the story of the day was Jered Weaver and the collective exhaling of Angels fans. Sure, he was at home, and his stuff wasn't lights out. But he got by, optimized his arsenal, and put up arguably the best start we've seen from the Angels so far this season(Hector Santiago is his rightful competition there). Weaver dealing like an ace, the bullpen coming in and shutting the door, and the Angels getting a win against a division rival on a Sunday...that's how it's supposed to go, guys. Now just repeat that every day, and we'll be good.