September 19, 2012; Anaheim, CA, USA; Los Angeles Angels first baseman Albert Pujols (5) throws to relief pitcher Garrett Richards (43) after he dives to catch a ground ball in the eighth inning against the Texas Rangers at Angel Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Angels Infield Defense Is Going To Be Important Too

Much has been made about the Angels outfield defense for 2013. In all honesty, with Mike Trout, Peter Bourjos and Josh Hamilton should combine to have the best defensive outfield. The outfield defense will be important due to how big the ballpark is, however, with this staff, don’t forget about the infield defense as well.

The infield defense is going to be just as important and it’s understated as well. They are more important than you think. In Joe Blanton‘s career, he’s actually a ground ball pitcher. His career ground ball rate (44%) is actually higher than his fly ball rate (35.7%). His home run per fly ball rate is 10.3% so that’s why he’s thought of as a fly ball pitcher. Trust me, this came to me as a surprise too.C.J. Wilson is another guy that the infield defense is important to. On batted balls, his career ground ball rate is 50.6%. His fly ball rate is just 30.1%. He needs a strong infield defense behind him too. Tommy Hanson has an even rate at 40% in ground ball and fly ball rate.

How about new closer Ryan Madson? His ground ball rate is 47% to just 32% on fly balls. Newly signed Sean Burnett on batted balls is 53%. Scott Downs in his career is 57.5%. Need I go on?

The Angels outfield defense is going to be good and important. Just don’t discount how Erick Aybar, Howard Kendrick, Albert Pujols and Alberto Callaspo handle the leather.

 

Tags: Defense Los Angeles Angels

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