Matt Shoemaker must pitch well today
By Joshua Lea
Matt Shoemaker has struggled lately as a starting pitcher. The Angels need him to pitch the game of his life today in order to continue the surging confidence the Angels have growing rapidly game-in and game-out. The Los Angeles Angels are about to wrap up the series with Oakland and Shoemaker could make it a sweep which would do wonders for this team moving forward.
Last night, the Los Angeles Angels pulled out a gritty win versus the Oakland Athletic’s by-means of a Geovany Soto two-run home run in the ninth inning. Albert Pujols was also huge in last nights 5-4 victory with a two-run double in the eight inning. Pujols also made history, passing Reggie Jackson in career RBI’s (1,703) for 23rd on all the all-time list. The Angels, winners of their last three games, are starting to find their collective rhythm. Angels closer Huston Street was crucial in the win, grabbing his third save on the season. The moral is up, the chemistry is clicking, and now the wins are coming. New edition players such as Yunel Escobar, Daniel Nava, Geovany Soto and Craig Gentry have expressed to the media that they feel they are apart of “something big”. The excitement is running chaotically throughout the Angels clubhouse and organization.
Today, the Angels will have Matt Shoemaker on the mound to face the Athletics before the Angels travel to Minnesota to battle with the 0-7 Twins. This is a big game for Shoemaker, who’s 2016 ERA sits at 18.00. Shoemaker has been on the decline since last season, having an ERA last season of 4.46 on a 7-10 season. Shoemaker must pitch well today versus the A’s. With the Angels rolling lately and the team confidence at an all time high, a bad loss can hurt the team as it continues on the road trip. The Angels will win the series against the A’s, today will determine on whether or not its a sweep.
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If Shoemaker throws another poor game today, it might be time to discuss whether or not a trade is possible. The Angels had success bringing in Nick Tropeano who pitched will to open the series with the Athletics. Also, the Angels recently called up local kid Greg Mahle (much to the delight of our own David Rice) who will get his shot a the majors. This means the margin for error with Shoemaker is thinner than a tie used in the 1990 Tarantino movies.
Shoemaker must pitch well today, consider this the most important game of his career. This game will set the tone for Shoemaker going forward the rest of the season. He only pitched three innings in his first outing of 2016. I would expect at least five good innings from him this afternoon or it might be time to experiment with the rotation.