Monday Links: So far, no one has caught on fire


Mar. 3, 2013; Tempe, AZ, USA; Los Angeles Angels catcher Chris Iannetta (17) hits a single during the second inning against the Chicago Cubs at Tempe Diablo Stadium. The Cubs beat the Angels 4-2. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

The Angels, unsurprisingly, continued their Cactus League schedule. It’s unsurprising in that it was scheduled to happen months ago and it did indeed happen. This is all just a way of saying that things went as scheduled. There were no incidents that led to the cancellation of any particular game—like a player spontaneously combusting or a grizzly bear roaming leftfield in search of sustenance and fisticuffs.

Which is really all you can hope for in Spring Training games. People played mostly meaningless baseball and nobody caught on fire. Good day.

The Angels lost both of their games this weekend pushing their spring record to 1-7-2. But friends, keep that thumb levitated above the panic button—there’s no need to push it yet.

In Saturday’s game against the Brewers—which the Angels dropped 4-3—Vernon Wells hit his first spring home run and C.J. Wilson struggled in his debut giving up a couple runs in an inning-and-two-thirds. In Sunday’s game—which your Angels lost 4-2 to the Cubs—Joe Blanton debuted and pitched two mostly solid innings allowing a home run to Brian Bogusevic, but struck out two.

Other things happened this weekend in Angels land ranging from interesting to somewhat-semi-interesting. Here’s a roundup:

There was a non-story this weekend involving Mike Trout that quickly became the biggest story in baseball mostly due to lack of other things going on. It involved the Angels renewal of Trout’s contract for barely above the league minimum. I wrote about it here and sort of took the side of Trout (or more accurately his agent) given the relatively minor cost on the part of the Angels of keeping their star player happy.

ESPN’s Buster Olney wrote about the Trout issue an said that his agent Craig Landis should take his beef up with the player’s union and not the Angels [Insider Only].

For his part, Trout is taking the high road of political correctness [Jeff Fletcher, OC Register].

Josh Hamilton Inevitable Injury Update: Slighty sore.

Speaking of Hamilton and slightly worrying things…

Mike Scioscia is not on board with the whole banning of home plate collisions thing [Mike DiGiovanna, LA Times].

Hiroyuki Kobayashi, we hardly knew ye [Ben Nicholson-Smith, MLB Trade Rumors].

Baseball Prospectus’ Sam Miller previews the Cactus League teams using only their outfield advertisements.

In potentially big divisional news, Rangers CEO Nolan Ryan may not hold that position much longer [Randy Galloway, Fort Worth Star-Telegram].

Ernesto Frieri has some new pitches he’d like to talk to you about [Jeff Fletcher, OC Register].

And C.J. Wilson is officially a two-sport star (kind of) (not really) [Chris Estrada, NBC MotorSportsTalk].