So much for the much anticipated Angels-Rangers showdown, eh? Texas clearly came ready to throwdown, but all the Angels could manage to do was roll over and take their beating.
If this game was in any way representative of how the rest of the AL West race is going to go, count me out. This wasn't just about the Rangers being better than the Angels, this loss definitely had a little bit of that, but it had a whole lot more of the Angels just not having any fight in them.
There was never any threat of a rally to get back into the game. There was never even any real frustration that the Halos were being completely stifled by Alexi Ogando. There wasn't even any sense of shame or embarrassment that the Rangers got to pile on with three salt-in-the-wound homers off of Michael "The Human Gas Can" Kohn.
I have to say that I kind of saw this coming (thus my 9-2 loss pre-game prediction), but that doesn't mean it still doesn't hurt. I just hope that this thumping snaps them out of this post-break malaise that the team is clearly mired in.
- I swear, Tyler Chatwood must know whenever I am planning to write a positive piece about him because he craps the bed the night before every single time. Tyler line wasn't terrible tonight, but he got away with a lot. His four walks definitely hurt, as did his inability to miss bats (just one strikeout) and his complete lack of efficiency with his pitches sure looked bad. But what really killed Tyler in this game was that he just could not finish an inning. The first two runs he allowed both scored after he retired the first two batters of the inning and the third came on a two-out base hit after he almost got away with a leadoff walk. I like Chatwood's stuff and do think he can eventually be a quality pitcher despite not having great command, but that isn't going to happen until figures out the nuances of pitching, specifically how and when to attack batters.
- Did Kinsler really fall for the old "fake to third throw to first" move? That's bush league, Ian. You have to know better, but I'm glad you didn't because you're a prick and I like to see you get embarrassed.
- You would think Jeff Mathis could muster even a little something to try and make the Angels look smart for demoting Hank Conger and essentially handing Mathis the full-time catcher's job, but instead, he seemed to be going out of his way to make them look stupid. He once again failed to throw out a baserunner because of poor accuracy. He screwed up the Angels' first good chance at scoring a run because he couldn't get a bunt down and then screwed up another run-scoring chance with a predictable strikeout. Of course the coup de grace was when he literally tripped over Elvis Andrus in a rundown without tagging him and almost allowed him to score. Mathis should be counting his blessings that Andrus didn't score there because it would have made that highlight a permanent fixture in blooper reels for the next two decades.
- I'm done with Michael Kohn. I know people had high hopes for him entering the year, but there is no way he is going to survive in the bigs issuing so many walks and giving up so many homers. Seriously, that ball Josh Hamilton hit still hasn't landed. What amazes me is Kohn only gave up seven homers in his enitre minor league career, but he somehow managed to give up three tonight, raising his season total to six in just 12.1 innings of work. The only thing more amazing than that is that Kohn might not get demoted tomorrow because the Angels don't really have anyone to call up, so he'll probably get to hang around until Fernando Rodney gets healthy.
This was definitely a team loss, but his failing were the most glaring and painful.