Los Angeles Angels Spring Training: Ranking the Top 5 Standouts So Far
Los Angeles Angels Spring Training: Ranking the Top 5 Early Standouts
With spring training now in full effect, there are a multitude of players across the league either attempting to make a major league ball club, solidify their spot on the team or just get themselves in tune before the regular season begins next month.
Each year there are standouts who make a name for themselves and carry their solid month of spring training into the season. Often times it may be a proven veteran showing that he still has the ability to make a major league roster or it could be a young player from the minors ready to display that he has the talent necessary to succeed at the next level.
As for the Los Angeles Angels, they are a ball club that is looking to rebound off a horrendous season in 2013 where the team once again fell short of expectation with a pitching staff that ranked in the bottom of the league in several important pitching categories.
In this year's spring training, the Halos will be looking to shore up not only their pitching but also see if the team's defense has improved from a year ago where they committed the fourth most errors (114) and had the fourth lowest fielding percentage (.981).
So what this means for Los Angeles is that they are open to any means of becoming a better team this upcoming season. This provides opportunities for players on the team and non-roster invitees to take advantage of by showcasing what they have for the entire month of March in hopes of making the Angels' opening day roster.
So without further ado, here are five standout players so far this spring training for the Angels.
Bob Garcia is a sports writer for RantSports.com. Follow him Twitter @Bgarcia90, “Like” him on Facebook , or add him to your network on Google.
5. Brandon Lyon
The 34-year-old right-hander has been a dominant pitcher on the mound in his two appearances this spring training as he has two innings of work with no hits allowed, two strikeouts and one save. Lyon has struggled over the last two seasons as he appeared to be still recovering from the shoulder surgery he had in 2011. So with another opportunity to join a major league ball club, the 11-year veteran reliever has shown so far this spring training that he has left his struggles behind, and he can be a reliable arm in the Angels' bullpen that is looking bounce back after a horrid 2013 season.
4. Brennan Boesch
The six-year veteran has certainly made the most of his opportunity this spring training as he has a .385 batting average with eight total bases and three runs scored in six games played. Boesch signed a minor-league contract last month in hopes of making the Angels' opening day roster, and so far he has made a great case to claim a roster spot as the team's fourth or fifth outfielder. The 28-year-old appears to be highly motivated as he did not receive any legitimate attention from any other ball club before the Halos signed him. So with increased playing time ahead of him this spring training, Boesch will be looking to better his chances at making the Halos' roster come April.
3. Garrett Richards
The third-year veteran in his only start of spring training was effective on the mound as he threw three scoreless innings. His first two innings of work consisted of 1-2-3 first inning and a double-play in the next inning that ended the frame. But that was not the most impressive part of his outing, as he got out of a jam with a runner in scoring position in the third inning by forcing a strikeout and two ground-outs that prevented the runner from scoring. Although it was just one start, it was encouraging to see the right-hander continue to make strides in his development by dominating the three innings he pitched.
2. Jered Weaver
The Los Angeles Angels' ace has looked sharp in two starts this spring training as he has allowed just one run in seven innings of work that is good for an 1.29 ERA with an impressive .192 opponent batting average against him. In his first start he threw three scoreless innings and followed it in his next outing by going four innings where he allowed just one run. It is an encouraging sign to see the 31-year-old off to a great start as he usually struggles in spring training, but this year appears to be different as he is primed to have a bounce back season in 2014.
1. Grant Green
Through five games played this spring training, the 26-year-old is on an absolute tear as he is batting .600 (6-of-10) with three RBIs and four doubles. Green has been locked in at the plate as evident by his five-game hitting streak and 10 total bases so far this month. He is in his first spring training with the Angels and will certainly be making a case for a larger role on team if he can carry his hot hitting throughout the next couple of weeks. Nonetheless, it will be interesting to see if Green can keep up his high level of play all spring.