Mariners 3, Salt Lake Bees 1

Angels
After clinching the division, Scioscia gave the regular season starters a much needed day off (though Conger did get screwed with that).  In their place he put a lineup of players who spent most of their season in AAA playing for the Bees. Many were worried about throwing in the "rookies" against Felix Hernandez but he has owned the veterans this year anyway going 3-0 his previous three starts against the Angels and allowing a total of only 6 runs in those 3 games. Wade LeBlanc was another concern, given his outing the last time he made an Angels start.  Howver, LeBlanc held his own against Hernandez and pitched a pretty stellar 5.1 innings giving up only 3 hits, no walks and throwing 72 pitches.  LeBlanc, Mike Morin, Joe Thatcher,…
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AL Central Race + AL Wildcard

Baseball
The Angels and Orioles have locked in their division championships, but there are still a lot of unknowns in the American League.  Most notably - who is going to win the AL Central?  With a half game spread, this is the closet race in baseball, and after the Tigers and Royals meet in Kansas City this weekend for a three game series, will the AL Central race be decided? Let's look at three factors to see who may take the AL Central crown. Head to Head in 2014 so far Recent performance of both teams Series match-up for this weekend Strength of remaining schedules ---------------------------- The Tigers are 11-5 against the Royals this year and won their last series 2-1.  ADVANTAGE: TIGERS The Royals at 9-7 in September with 3…
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Angels Clinch AL West!

Angels
CJ was amazing on the mound last night throwing 7 innings of one hit ball.  The other CJ him a 3 run moon shot in the Angels 5-run fifth inning.  Post game we all waited (I was at the stadium) while we got by with a little help from our "friends" as the Rangers beat the A's in another Oakland meltdown.  Sadly I missed the champagne dousing and Angels victory lap since I took the train and had to get back to San Diego.  Of all days I wish I had driven... The Angels season so far has been nothing short of Amazing.  Josh Hamilton and Kole Calhoun were missing much of the first part of the season, our bullpen was among the worst in April and May and we…
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Bullpen Meltdown

Angels, pitching
As if the Angels Bullpen wanted to say "see - we aren't quite perfect all the time", they proceeded to blow things in a big way Tuesday night at the Big A. Rasmus started out the game with a masterful 4 inning appearance in which he amassed a mere 43 pitches over just 13 batters.  Then came Jason Grilled Cheese and his meltdown. Grilli walked his first batter (Kendrys Morales) then hit the next (Logan Morrison).  He ended up lasting .1 innings with 2 hits, 1 walk, 1 HPB and 4 earned runs.  Ouch.  But no big deal right?  The Angels were down 2-4 at this point which just takes one Halo magic inning to put them back in it.  So Mike Morin came in and finished off the inning with…
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Playoff Roster

Angels
The Playoffs are looming for the Angels who now have a magic number of 4 going into a 4-game series at home with the Mariners.   The question is, which 25 will Scioscia take with him into the playoffs? Angels 40 Man Roster: Catchers Infield Outfield Starters Relievers John Buck Erick Aybar Brennan Boesch Jered Weaver Cam Bedrosian Hank Conger Gordon Beckham Kole Calhoun CJ Wilson Jairo Diaz Chris Iannetta CJ Cron Tony Campana Matt Shoemaker Jason Grilli David Freese Collin Cowgill Hector Santiago Yoslan Herrera Luis Jimenez Grant Green Kevin Jepsen Howie Kendrick Josh Hamilton Wade LeBlanc John McDonald Efren Navarro Mike Morin Shawn O'Malley Mike Trout Vinnie Pestano Albert Pujols Cory Rasmus Michael Roth Drew Rucinski Fernando Salas Joe Smith Huston Street Joe Thatcher Let's start with the…
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9/18 Angels Rankings – Position Players

Angels, Rankings
My rankings include the entire 40 man roster . These rankings were compiled with the help of MLB stats, FanGraphs, misc. data, personal opinion, and some fairy dust I found hidden in Shoemaker's beard. The Angels offense absolutely exploded last week.  Some incredible run production! Updates to List: None Rank Player Last Week Change High Low Comments 1 Mike Trout 1 - 1 6 Amazing week for Trout with 2 Hr, 2 triples, 2 doubles, 10 runs scored and an insane 1.411 OPS 2 Albert Pujols 2 - 2 3 Continuing his good season and nearly hit for the cycle.  That's right - Pujols hit a triple! 3 Howie Kendrick 3 - 3 6 On fire with a .429 average and a home run 4 Kole Calhoun 5 +1 2…
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9/18 Angels Rankings – Pitchers

Angels, pitching, Rankings
My rankings include the entire 40 man roster - not just the active 25 man. These rankings were compiled with the help of MLB stats, FanGraphs, misc. data, personal opinion, and some fairy dust I found hidden in Shoemaker's beard. An asterisk* means the player was not on the active roster at the time of this posting. Updates to List: Joe Thatcher was removed from the DL Added Jairo Diaz Rank Player Last Week Change High Low Comments 1 Jered Weaver 1 - 1 5 Weaver was an ace last week and was in top of his career form against the Astros on Saturday when he struck out 12 over 7 innings. 2 Joe Smith 2 - 2 4 Perfect in 2 innings pitched 3 Huston Street 3 -  1…
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Magic Number Update

Baseball
Magic numbers are starting to change rapidly - at least for a few teams.  Let's take a look at how things are shaping up going into the weekend. Magic Numbers of Division Leaders: Baltimore Orioles = 8 (17 games to play) Kansas City Royals = 17 (18 games to play) Los Angeles Angels = 9 (17 games to play) Washington Nationals = 10 (18 games to play) St. Louis Cardinals = 14 (16 games to play) Los Angels Dodgers = 14 (16 games to play) There are three teams that are close to locking in their division championship and may do so sometime in the next week: Orioles, Angels, Nationals.  Of course anything is possible but the Orioles could go 8-9 the rest of the season while Toronto goes on…
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Shoebacca!

Angels, pitching
Matt Shoemaker, aka Shoebacca, just locked down the most wins ever by an Angels Wookie rookie at 15.  Shoemaker is the dude that went un-drafted and ended up being scouted out of the Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League by the Los Angeles Angels.  At 27 years old, Shoemaker is a rookie and only making league minimum despite a run at a Cy Young award (especially if you look at post All Star stats) and a run at rookie of the year were it not for the likes of Jose Abreu, and all the while only making league minimum.  Talk about a bargain! Shoemaker has been playing in the minors since 2008 with average numbers.  His minors career ERA is 4.52, WHIP 1.356, 7.4 SO/9, 2 shutouts, and a 50-40 record.  Shoemaker made…
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Best AL Rookie Pitcher?

Baseball, pitching
Today we'll start looking at some rookie of the year prospects. There is no such thing as "pitcher rookie of the year" - anymore. But there have been some very notable rookie performance so far this year.  I'm going to only look at starters in this case with a minimum 100 innings pitched. American League (top 4-5 per stat): Most Wins: 1. Matt Shoemaker, LAA, 14 2. Masahiro Tanaka, NYY, 12 3. Yordano Ventura, KC, 12 4. Odorizzi, Elias, Stroman, 10 ERA: 1. Masahiro Tanaka, NYY, 2.51 2. Collin McHugh, HOU, 2.79 3. Yordano Ventura, KC, 3.25 3. Matt Shoemaker, LAA, 3.25 WHIP 1. Masahiro Tanaka, NYY, 1.01 2. Collin McHugh, HOU, 1.04 3. Matt Shoemaker, LAA, 1.10 4. Marcus Stroman, TOR, 1.16 K/9 1. Masahiro Tanaka, NYY, 10.1 2.…
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