I feel like this year’s preview could be copied almost straight from last year with a few name changes. The Angels went out and signed a big stud hitter for big bucks. This year – Josh Hamilton, last year – Albert Pujols. They changed up their pitching staff. This year – Tommy Hanson and Jason Vargas, last year – CJ Wilson. So what did it get them last year? Jack shit. 3rd place in a pretty good division – even though they were playing much better towards the end of the season. One thing they do have this year, that they didn’t last year: a full season of Mike Trout.
Let’s take a closer look at the Angels.
Major Off-Season Moves:
Signed Josh Hamilton to a 5 yr/$125M contract.
Acquired SP Jason Vargas from the Mariners.
Acquired SP Tommy Hanson from the Braves.
Signed SP Joe Blanton.
Signed RP Ryan Madson.
The Angles certainly weren’t quiet this off season and pulled another sneak attack when they signed Josh hamilton from rival Texas. It was seemingly likely the Mariners or Rangers for Hamilton and then the Angels swooped it and gave him exactly what he wanted. When Arte Moreno sees a shiny toy he wants, he steps up big. They also need to reload their rotation after Zach Greinke left and they jettisoned Ervin Santana. They grabbed 3 new starting pitchers so they at least got some bodies in there.
Now on to who is going to take the field this year.
-Mike’s move to Bleacher Report as a featured writer
-Prospects and players that have been impressive around Spring Training thus far
-Chipper Jones’ retirement announcement
-Would you rather have a player hang around as long as possible, or retire on their own terms?
-Dusty Baker on the hot seat, our reaction
-The Arte Moreno GQ interview
-As always, much more and a preview of next week’s over/under & predictions show
Arte Moreno has enough money to buy you, make you dance a jig for his amusement, sell you for thirty cents on the dollar, buy you back, have you killed, and then have you made into some amusing little tinker-toy.
GQ: Is there concern about paying him $30 million when he’s 41 years old? Arte Moreno: Someone else asked me this, and I said, “I’ll tell you something: If he’s healthy enough and he’s playing for us, then I’m gonna just say, ‘Merry Christmas to all baseball fans,’” because we get to see one of the best players of our generation coming to bat.
I hope Pujols plays until he’s 41 but there’s a good chance by then the Angels will be looking for a mulligan on this contract like most teams do that sign an aging player to a deal like they did with Pujols.
I’d also recommend checking out Halo Hangout’s take on the interview. It’s headed up by our boy MJ Lloyd and it’s a pretty good long view on the Angels. What I can’t figure out is why ESPN didn’t capitalize on the interest the Angels will draw and start an Angels blog similar to ‘The Heat Index’.
Since there’s nothing like that–if you want the pulse of the Angels lockerroom this season we would say your best bet is to check out what MJ is saying about them. Plus he’ll publish more dick jokes than ESPN would.