See this is why I love the Angels. They can stink up the joint for the better park of the week then with one game can look like they will march to the World Series without any trouble. How can one team both frustrate and enliven me so. Okay, so maybe I'm overstating this win a bit, but it was awfully nice to see such a complete win. At least, the part I actually got to see. I lost out on the first three innings due to my cable companies stubborn refusal to show all Angel games in HD. So what I got when I recorded the game was the fourth inning on. But have no fear I will recap as if I saw the whole thing...
Angels 9 Braves 0
The Angels came home with a clear mission; get back into the swing of things. The offense needed a breakout game and they got one. 4 of the 10 hits were for extra bases (as opposed to the normal 9 singles a night approach they usually take). The only damper on the evening was Hank Conger's 0-4, even though he did get an RBI, which I'm sure will lead to his immediate benching in favor of the hard hitting Jeff Mathis.
-- Welcome back, Mark Trumbo. A three run Trumbomb heralded a 3-4 night and signaled the beginning of a hot streak. At least that's my hope. Trumbo has all the look of a streak hitter and has been so bad in the box lately people were wondering if the shine had worn off the kid. But last night he had his stroke working. He had the two hardest hit balls of the evening and his performance in the box keyed the Halo victory.
-- In the game preview I called out Hunter and Abreu to step up and lead by example. Well they both responded with decent night at the dish. Abreu in particular looked more comfortable than he has been in awhile and was on base all night. At it was nice to see Hunter play the field without losing a ball in the lights.
-- How awesome was Ervin Santana!! His slider has had all the bite of a toothless poodle the last few starts but last night he had it dipping and diving like it was on a string. Santana's complete game shutout was a masterpiece of pitching prowess and just highlights why he can be so frustrating at times. I wish he could repeat this type of performance on a regular basis but I know he won't so I won't get my hopes up.
Thanks for the pre-rapture gift, Ervin. Just don't think one dominant performance a year is going to get you in the book for ascension. I think the big guy in the sky may want a little more consistency on his team.