In an interview with MLB.com, Los Angeles Angels manager Mike Scioscia said he is as committed as ever to the team, despite speculation that the longest-tenured skipper’s time may be up at season’s end. Those rumors raise the obvious question of whether owner Arte Moreno will reciprocate Scioscia’s stated commitment.
As he nears the end of his 14th season at the helm, Scioscia’s Angel teams have gone 1,233-1,033 with a memorable World Series win in 2002. I’ve already written that Scioscia has received too much blame for the Angels’ struggles this year, but even so, his future is highly uncertain as Moreno makes changes to satisfy a very disappointed fan base.
It’s well known to Angel fans that Scioscia and GM Jerry Dipoto — who is also under scrutiny after the heinous five-year, $125 million deal to which he signed Josh Hamilton — have not always had the coziest relationship.
It’s not hard to understand why; Scioscia’s most successful teams have always been comprised of scrappy, unheralded players whose aggressive baserunning and small-ball acumen manufactured runs in a pinch. In the past few years, however, the Angels have thrown tons of money at big-name sluggers and pitchers who have underperformed and whose hefty price tags have purged the Los Angeles farm system of most of its home-grown talent.
Though Scioscia may not be responsible for most of these developments, blame always starts at the top in sports. Regardless of his culpability, sometimes players need to hear a different voice in the clubhouse. If that’s the case for the Angels, then Scioscia’s ouster might do them some good. It will be a tough decision for Moreno, and one that will doubtlessly provoke strong reactions all throughout Halo nation.