Archive for April, 2009

April 24th, 2009

Angels 4th ranked prospect (According to Baseball America) Trevor Reckling has been promoted the the Quakes to the Arkansas Travelers to fill the spot in rotation that was left after Sean O’Sullivan was promoted to the Salt Lake Bees. Reckling is a left handed starting pitcher who was drafted in the 8th round (268th overall) in the 2007 1st year player draft. Reckling was 1-2 with a 0.95 ERA in 3 starts with the Quakes. Reckling’s best pitch is his curveball , which is known as the best curveball in the Angels system. It is unknown whether Reckling’s call up will be permanent, or if he will be sent down when the Angels rotation starts to get healthy.

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April 23rd, 2009

 

The Angels have the worst bullpen ERA in the American League which is uncharacteristic for Mike Scioscia’s squad,whose bullpen has been near the top of the American League the past few years. Kevin Jepsen was placed on the Disabled List, which could explain his early season struggles. Scott Shields is having trouble locating his pitches, walking 5 batters in 5 innings before tonights ga,e, and is hanging his pitches over the plate. Shields said he felt confident after having a bullpen session just a few days ago, but gave up 3 runs tonight without recording an out. After an impressive rookie campaign in which fans hailed him as the “Closer of the Future,” Jose Arredondo has allowed 4 runs in 6 innings. New closer Brian Fuentes has blown 1 save in 4 chances and has an ERA of 7.20. The only relief pitcher who has been impressive has been Darren Oliver, but he has been temporarily been moved into the rotation, to fill in for some of their injured starting pitchers. The most disappointing part about the bullpens struggles is that even with all the injuries in the starting rotation, the Angels have the best starting pitcher ERA in the American League. With the performances given by the Angels rotation, they should not be a 5-8 team.

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April 14th, 2009

Brandon Wood

Brandon Wood is the biggest name in the Angels farm system. After hitting over 40 home runs with the Quakes in the California League, his name was known amongst most Angel fans. Its no surprise to anybody that he is tied for the Milb lead with 3 home runs in 4 games, but he is also batting an impressive .333.  Wood also has 16 total bases and 4 RBIs in only 15 at bats. The only problem Wood has had this season, is that he has stricken out 4 times, and has not been walked in 4 games. But with the way Wood is swinging the stick, pitchers will stop giving him as many pitches to hit. His slugging percentage is a very impressive 1.067.  Wood can play both 3B and SS, and could play a huge roll down the stretch if Chone Figgins or Erick Aybar happen to go down with an injury.

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April 13th, 2009

Peter Bourjos is a 22 year old outfielder with exceptional speed. He has below average power, but is an above average fielder, but his biggest concern is his eye, in 121 games, he only compiled 19 walks, while striking out 96 times last season, and has a 218/62  K/BB ration in his minor league career. Best case scenario is that he is a Reggie Willits type utility outfielder but with a little bit more power. Bourjos spent all of the 2008 season with the Rancho Cucamongo Quakes, where he batted .295 with 29 doubles, 10 triples, 9  home runs, and 83 runs. He also knocked in 51 RBIs and stole 50 bases in the leadoff spot. Bourjos was drafted in the 10th round of the 2005 First-Year Player Draft and was signed by John Gracio. Bourjos was selected in 2008 as a California League Mid-Season All Star. Don’t look into the struggles Bourjos had in the 2009 Spring Training, he has plenty of time to develop in the Angels farm system. He only has one card which is from 2007 Bowman Chrome where his base autographs can be had for under 5$ and his blue refractors can be had for 20-25$. He is a pretty low risk investment who is starting the 2009 season with the Arkansas Travelers, but is blocked in the Angels stacked outfield, so I wouldn’t expect Bourjos to hit the majors until 2011. 

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April 13th, 2009

The Bullpen has been all but impressive to start the season. Brian Fuentes has blown a save this season already. In this afternoon’s affair between the Red Sox, Scott Shields and Brian Fuentes walked a combined 5 batters in the final two innings of the game. The Angels were lucky to get out of this afternoons game with the win. The Angels bullpen has given up 12 Earned Runs in only 16 Innings Pitched. The Angels rotation is a combined 3-1, while the Angels bullpen is a combined 0-2. It seems like Francisco Rodriguez is a bigger loss than previously thought. The Angels have had one of the top bullpens in baseball for the past few years, and the bullpen this year is struggling. Is it early strugles, or is it a sign of things to come. You can’t expect a team to perform well, if their bullpen can’t keep them in games.

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April 12th, 2009

The loss of Nick Adenhart was a blow to every to every piece of the Angels organization. Adenhart signed with the Angels at the age of 18 and played in the Angels Organization at every level. The Bees postponed their season opener, which was to be played on Thursday, as a tribute to the late Nick Adenhart.

The Angels Class A Affiliate, the Cedar Rapid Kernels kicked off their season sweeping the Beloit Snappers, and starting the season 3-0. Hector Estrella kicked off the season on Thurday by going 2-6 and driving in 3 RBIs. Michael Davitt started the season by going 5.2 innings, allowing 6 hits and 2 ER, while fanning 10 Beloit batters, and earned a no-decision. The Kernels recorded 16 of 27 outs by way of strikeout. Alex Auer has hit the only HR for the Kernels this season. Jeremy Thorne has the only save for the Kernels. Hector Estrella leads the team with 4 RBIs.

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April 10th, 2009

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April 10th, 2009

The Angels have a shown a few troubling concerns in the first series of the season. The biggest disappointment of this season has been the Angels bullpen. With Francisco Rodriguez signing with the Mets, the Angels went out and signed Brian Fuentes to become the everyday closer. Fuentes looked impressive on Opening Day, recording the save with a 1-2-3 inning, but on Wednesday night, Fuentes blew the save and gave up 3 Earned Runs in an inning. That was the 2nd game of the three games this season in which the bullpen gave up the lead. So far this season, the Angels bullpen has given up 9 Earned runs in 9.1 innings. On the other hand, the Angels starting pitching has looked good this season, even with Ervin Santana, John Lackey, and Kelvim Escobar on the Disabled List. Joe Saunders, Dustin Moseley, and the late Nick Adenhart all had strong outings in their season debut. On the hitting side, the Angels have had no trouble getting on base, but they have been atrocious when it comes to hitting in the runners. Even with the Angels batting average of .257, the Angels are averaging only 4 runs per game, and have had 21 strikeouts, compared to only 10 walks. Now adding in the trauma of the loss of Nick Adenhart, and with all the young talent the Angels have on the team, the Angels could have a rough few weeks, with the start of a series against the Red Sox tonight.

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April 10th, 2009

Nick Adenhart died just past midnight on April 9th, after getting hit by a drunk driver who ran a red light. Nick Adenhart was a predicted top 10 pick in the 2004 Amateur draft, but sustained an elbow injury just a few days before the draft, and required Tommy John surgery. Adenhart came back the Summer of 2005, and was named as the Angels best pitching prospect in 2006, a title he would hold for three years in a row. In 2007 at the age of 2o, he had a 3.65 ERA, and showed him self as one of the best young arms in the minors. He earned his first call-up to the MLB in 2008 when he replaced Dustin Moseley. In 3 starts, Adenhart went 1-0 with a 9.00 ERA in 12 innings. After Lackey returned from injury, Adenhart was sent back to AAA where he had a shaky season with a 5.76 ERA. Going into Spring Training this season, Shane Loux, Dustin Moseley, and Nick Adenhart were competing for the last spot in the Angels rotation until Kelvim Escobar’s expected return from a torn rotator cuff in mid-May. Due to the injuries of John Lackey and Ervin Santana, all three were placed in the rotation. Adenhart made his first start of the 2009 season on April 8th when he hurled six scoreless innings against the Oakland Athletics. Just hours after the game,  Nick Adenhart and three others were killed in a car accident. Rest in Peace Nick Adenhart, you will be missed by the Angel Family and all of Major League Baseball.

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April 1st, 2009

With  All Star Ervin Santana and Kelvim Escobar expected to miss all of April, as well as their Ace John Lackey who is expected to miss most of April, the Angels have some questions regarding their rotation. Joe Saunders is expected to be named the Opening Day Starter, and Weaver is slated for the #2 spot. Behind those two guys, the Angels have some question marks. Nick Adenhart, Shane Loux, and Dustin Moseley are all expected to make the starting rotation, but it was expected that those 3 guys would be battling for the #5 spot in the rotation until Escobar makes his comeback from a torn shoulder. Dustin Moseley has been a spot starter for the Angels the past 3 season and features a record of 7-7 with a 5.52 ERA, and featured a 6.79 ERA last season. The Angels are hoping that the highly touted Nick Adenhart can have a bounce back year after a dissapointing 2008 season. Nick Adenhart made 3 starts with the big league squad in which he was 1-0 with a 9.00 ERA and 13 walk in 12 innings pitched. Adenhart had a 9-13 record with a 5.76 ERA last season with the Angels Triple-A affiliate, the Salt Lake Bees. Shane Loux, who had his first major league work since 2003, was used in relief work last season. Shane was an impressive 12-6 with the Salt Lake Bees last season and had a 3.96 ERA in 22 starts. Loux was called up to the majors for the first time since 2003 and was used as a middle reliever, and carried a 2.81 ERA while throwing 16 innings with the Angels. Ervin Santana made his first career All Star appearance and finished 6th in AL Cy Young voting last season, after coming off an awful 2007 season in which he was demoted to the Bees in August. Kelvim Escobar missed all of the 2008 season with a shoulder injury was 18-7 in 2007 with a 3.40 ERA and was  an AL Cy Young award canidate.

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