Top 5 Disappointments of Los Angeles Angels’ Season
Angels Continue to Struggle, Disappoint
At 47-52, the Los Angeles Angels are far from where they thought they would be at the start of the season. With only 63 games left in their season, the Halos will have to play at a near-superhuman level to make the playoffs, and just about everything that could have gone bad has turned sour in Anaheim.
With the July 31 deadline imminent, the Angels are obviously taking stock of their options at this point. Unfortunately, the cure for what ails the team is unlikely to come in the form of new personnel. Los Angeles thought they had already taken care of their personnel needs with the massive acquisitions of the past two seasons. Even so, GM Jerry DiPoto wouldn't turn his nose up at a modest acquisition — particularly a strong arm — to stop the bleeding.
Perhaps the most frustrating part of watching the Halos has been their two-steps-forward, two-steps-back trajectory. Twice this season they have followed up long win streaks (eight and seven games) with uninspired play that all but erased their momentum. Beyond any one facet, this inconsistency has made the Angels the most aggravating team of 2013.
Management will face plenty of questions at the end of the year: what will be the fate of Mike Scioscia, who has been the only Halos manager in the new millennium? What to do with the bloated contracts of Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton? The Angels' fate in coming years largely depends on how they answer these questions. In the meantime, let's break down exactly where Los Angeles has gone wrong with their top five disappointments of the season.
Tony Baker is a Los Angeles Angels writer for Rant Sports. You can follow him on Twitter at @tonloc_baker.
It may not be a real disappointment since few expected the Los Angeles rotation to be dominant heading into the season. Even so, the drop off from Weaver and C.J. Wilson to the rest of the staff is unconscionable: While Weaver's ERA stands at 2.98 and Wilson's at 3.15, the other starters have a combined 4.76 ERA. That simply will not get the job done.
This one is truly perplexing. No one had particularly high expectations of the Angels' defense, but that was thought to be irrelevant in light of what was supposed to be an All-Star caliber offense. Yet, the Halos lead the major leagues with 73 errors, which would be an albatross around the neck of any team, but especially one as inconsistent as Los Angeles.
Here is where we can give Los Angeles the benefit of the doubt. It's not the team's fault they were without Weaver for a month and a half, or that their already-thin rotation has been decimated by injuries to Jason Vargas and Tommy Hanson. Add the ongoing Peter Bourjos saga, and the Halos have caught a particularly bad case of the injury bug. All very disappointing.
2. Albert Pujols
Pujols is now in year four of a steady statistical decline following one of the greatest 10-year stretches in baseball history. Look at his batting average from 2010-2013: .312, .299, .285, .254. His struggles this year have been exacerbated by plantar fasciitis, but this is still not the trend that Angel fans want to see.
1. Josh Hamilton
Hamilton's statistics this year pretty much speak for themselves: .223, 14 HRs, 41 RBIs. For five years and $125 million, couldn't he at least be hitting .250? Unfortunately, no team will ever trade for that contract, so Los Angeles just needs to hope he rediscovers his mojo all on his own.