Dan Haren has got to be feeling a little snake bit. All he does is keep going out there and putting himself in a position to win and continues to have nothing to show for it. Today it was another 7/23 of awesomeness only to see it blown in the 8th. But some clutch hitting saved the day and Walden's return to form in the ninth gave the Halos a much needed win. So for at least another couple of days, we can bask in the glow of the first place Angels. Sounds good, doesn't it...
The offense continues to confound and frustrate the hell out of me. It took 10 hits to get the three runs needed for the victory and my pick for the player of the game, one Mr. Bob Abreu, had a forgettable afternoon at the dish. The lack of offensive production requires the pitchers to be almost perfect each game, which will eventually hurt them in the long run. Today at least we got vintage Haren along with a dominant Jordan Walden to secure the victory. This game was also momentous in that it saw the first multi-hit game from Jeffy Mathis since the beginning of April. His lead off single in the ninth allowed him to score the winning run and probably secure playing time for the next three months. Damn you Mathis and your lucky bat.
-- Why not bring in Scott Downs right away in the 8th instead of Rodney? This is what I was screaming at the TV when Mike pulled Haren in favor of the Tilted Hat of Misery. Do you think Haren said something to Scioscia while walking off the mound or waited till he got to the dugout to curse about the win he was about to lose out on. I know it's the percentage move, but if that's the case then bring in Rich Thompson? Heck, I'd rather see one of my righthanded kids, at age 5, out there. I know that the hit Fernando gave up would be an error in every other ballpark, but it's more fun to blame The Human Grease Fire.
-- How about the Wonder Twins? Alberto Callaspo continues his push to respectability with a 2-4 day including 2 RBI's. Maicer Itzuris was once again the most clutch of clutch hitters with the game winner in the top of the ninth. Both also played rock solid defense, even with the Callaspo error, and have to come to symbolize this team and their approach.
-- I think we are seeing the side effects of the Vernon Wells injury in an unexpected way. Both Torii Hunter and Peter Bourjos need a day off. Bourjos was 0-3 with 2 strikeouts and looks a little overmatched right now. Hunter had his second consecutive 0-4 and still looks as if he is trying to hit every pitch out of the park. Wells' absence makes it hard to give the other guys time off to get their heads right. And right now, both need it.
Even the sun shines on a dog's behind once and awhile right? Congrats, Jeff you will continue to rob Hank Conger of at bats after today's performance. Hope your happy.