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A TALE OF TAPE REGARDING SOCAL’S TWO MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL TEAMS AS THEY PREPARE TO FACE EACH OTHER THESE NEXT TWO WEEKENDS
BY THE WAY: This will also serve as our official mid-season report
2018 FREEWAY SERIES:
- July 6-8 at Angel Stadium
- July 13-15 at Dodger Stadium
All-Time Record: Angels lead 63-51
Last Season: Dodgers and Angels split four games
LOS ANGELES ANGELS: 2018 BY THE NUMBERS (To Date)
Record: 44-43, fourth place in the American League West, 12 & a 1/2 games behind the Houston Astros
- Mike Trout, CF: .310 average, 24 HR, 49 RBI
- Andrelton Simmons, SS: .316 average, 6 HR, 39 RBI
- Albert Pujols, 1B: .249 average, 12 HR, 46 RBI
- Justin Upton, LF: .252 average, 17 HR, 45 RBI
- Shohei Ohtani, P/DH: .287 average, 6 HR, 20 RBI / 4-1, 3.10 ERA
- Tyler Skaggs, P: 6-5, 2.64 ERA, 100 strikeouts (on Disabled List)
- Garret Richards, P: 5-4, 3.42 ERA
- Blake Parker, RP: 10 saves, 3.05 ERA
Last Game: Angels beat the Seattle Mariners, 7-4, at Safeco Field in Seattle.
It’s the same old story with these Halos, as no less than fourteen of their players, including nine of their pitcher, are on the DL right now.
Particularly when it comes to their pitching, these Angel hurlers truly have glass elbows and shoulders as they started well, only to run into reality at the hands of the Astros, New York Yankees, and particularly the Boston Red Sox as they won all seven games over the Halos this season.
Even Shohei Ohtani, while he’s been doing perfectly fine in the Show so far, has shown to have a glass elbow. Thank goodness he’s been cleared to hit again!
Which is why, while I still see them winning around 80 games due to their lineup, until their pitchers can stay off the DL they’ll never go further than a Wild Card spot at best.
Which makes me feel bad for Mike Trout, who I call Superman for obvious reasons.
This best player in baseball deserves better than what he’s been getting in Anaheim as far as achieving postseason glory, and you know what?
If he does decide to leave the Angels when his free agency comes up – if not before – I wouldn’t blame him in the slightest because players like him want championships.
And the way things are going now, as long as Angel pitchers’ arms, elbows and shoulder are as glassy as they are, I honestly can’t see them doing that.
A very good shot of two SoCal baseball stars, Matt Kemp (left) and Mike Trout (right). Photo courtesy of zimbio.com
LOS ANGELES DODGERS: 2018 BY THE NUMBERS (To Date)
Record: 47-39, second place in the National League West, 1/2 game behind the Arizona Diamondbacks
- Matt Kemp, LF: .318 average, 15 HR, 55 RBI
- Max Muncy, 3B/2B: .280 average, 20 HR, 38 RBI
- Yasiel Puig, RF: .262 average, 9 HR, 31 RBI
- Chris Taylor, SS: .264 average, 10 HR, 37 RBI
- Joc Pederson, CF: .261 average, 13 HR, 37 RBI
- Clayton Kershaw, P: 2-4, 2.86 ERA
- Ross Stripling, P: 6-2, 2.27 ERA
- Kenley Jansen, RP: 23 saves, 2.21 ERA
Last Game: Dodgers beat the Pittsburgh Pirates, 6-4, at Dodger Stadium completing the three game sweep.
I think I owe these Dodgers an apology.
While I didn’t exactly write them off in April for their bad start, and while I didn’t quite push the panic button on them – though my finger was on that button,
I didn’t feel that they would pick themselves up enough to get the opportunity to win that fourth World Series game that so eluded them in a such a disastrous way eight months ago.
To say that the Dodgers have turned things around big time since June 1st would be an understatement, having just swept the PIrates, I’ve been telling folks that I want a crack at those D-Backs again – which will come at the end of August.
If I were forced to name one single factor for the Dodgers’ resurgence, it would come down to a guy who roughly 98% of the fans thought would be traded before the end of spring training because he was widely thought of as being past his prime.
Not only has Matt Kemp more or less carried that blue-clad ball club, he’s on track to become a starter in the upcoming MLB All-Star Game in Washington, D.C. on July 17th (For the record: Yes, I voted for him!)
Personally, I was happy to see Kemp back, was rooting for him in March, and was ecstatic to see him take the job in left field and kick butt the way he has to this point!
If they can get guys like Hyun Jin Ryu healthy, there’s no telling how far they can go!
And adding Manny Machado, a superstar (not quite on the level of LeBron James, but still) toiling for the worst-record-in-baseball Baltimore Orioles, wouldn’t hurt…
My Official Prediction of This Upcoming Freeway Series Between these Dodgers and Angels:
The Angels’ pitching, as has been the case for the past several years, is too injury prone, suspect, and an Achilles heel.
Which is why I see the Dodgers taking four out of the six games between them overall, winning two of three both in Anaheim and Chavez Ravine.