Monkeying Around: The End is Nigh
The end is coming soon Angel fans, be very afraid.
As we sit here on the Angels' final off day of the 2010 season and on the precipice of the Halos being officially eliminated from the post-season race, it seems like a good time to get out a few lingering thoughts while I still can.
- Here is why I hate the MLB arbitration system: Jeff Mathis is currently sporting a .486 OPS, which is tragically low, even for him, and he is probably still going to get a nice little pay raise this off-season. One can only hope that the potential salary bump will force the Halos to either trade him or straight up non-tender him (and his costly passed ball last night should only help convince them to take that route).
- Another quick anti-Mathis note: let it be known that Bobby Wilson actually has a lower catcher's ERA (3.47) and a better caught stealing percentage (26.7%) than Mathis (19.6%). While his OPS is an unimpressive .676, he is still a much better hitter than Mathis will ever be and I'm not so sure that he isn't better defensively too (not to mention cheaper). Having Wilson and Conger platoon next year makes so much sense in light of those stats, that there is just no way it will come to fruition.
- I'm just going to go on record now so that nobody can say I made it up after the fact: if Fernando Rodney is the closer to start the 2011 season, they will not make the post-season. Having a lousy closer like him for a full season is just too disheartening for starting pitchers who will consistently watch their well-pitched games go to waste. Plus, the constant debate over whether or not he should be replaced is only going to annoy the crap out of the coaching staff, roster and fans.
- If anyone knows the whereabouts of Jason Bulger, please contact your local police department. He got activated from the DL at the start of the month, made one performance (a poor one) and hasn't been seen since. Is he injured again and the Angels aren't saying anything? Brian Stokes was activated at the same time as Bulger and made just one bad appearance before he got waived. Maybe the Angels took it up another notch and just buried Bulger underneath the mound. That seems a bit extreme to me, but maybe they just wanted to save him the indignity of being non-tendered this off-season.
- I had a really bad nightmare last night. In my dream, Carl Crawford spurned the Angels in free agency, forcing the Halos into panic mode, so they overreacted and offered Gary Matthews another five-year, $50 million contract. My wife said that she woke up to me sobbing, curled up in the fetal position and sucking my thumb.
- The bright side of the Angels' season being over early is that I am free to watch all the season premieres of my favorite television shows! C'mon, tell me the new season of Glee doesn't look great! Errr... I mean, I don't watch Glee. That show is for pre-teen girls. I meant WWE Raw. Yeah, that's the ticket. That's a manly show, right? Stop judging me!!!!
- Sometimes I have to laugh at myself. I am the very guy who has largely stated that I think Mark Trumbo is going to be a bust, or at the very least a player who doesn't fit into the Angels' philosophy, yet I also am completely and totally obsessed with the pre-game lineup announcement to see if the Halos will finally give him a start. It makes no sense; I think he stinks yet desperately want to see him play. I guess these are the kind of things a fan becomes consumed by when his team is out of it.
- I know everyone isn't into advanced statistics, but here is a stat for you to chew on. One out of every eight Americans is left-handed, yet the Angels have eleven relievers on the active roster right now and NONE OF THEM ARE LEFT-HANDED!!!! Seriously, how can the Angels not have a single southpaw in the pen? They've even called up like three hundred minor league pitchers this year and not one of them is a lefty. I'm beginning to wonder if someone in the scouting department has some sort of deep-seeded prejudice against left-handed people.
- Humor me for a minute on this idea because I am just throwing it out for discussion, not because I endorse it. Might the Angels be smart to put Jered Weaver on the trade block this off-season? Think about it, he's still under team control for two more years at what should be a relatively reasonable price (compared to other elite starting pitchers) via arbitration and he just keeps on getting better. Plus, he has virtually no history of health problems. Would he not earn the Halos a king's ransom in terms of elite prospects for them to load back up on? His value couldn't be any higher than this off-season when Cliff Lee is really the only frontline starter available as a free agent. And with Scott Boras as his agent, the Angels might be wise to cash out on Weaver now rather than get screwed over by Boras (again) in two years. Again, I am not endorsing it, but it is something they might want to consider.