The Los Angeles Angels are rolling through spring training with ease. The Halos look like they’re ready to challenge for the division so far.
So far, the Los Angeles Angels are breezing through their spring training schedule. The 3-0 Angels will look to extend their winning streak with a win against the World Series Champion Chicago Cubs.
While many fans believe that these games don’t matter, trust me, they do. These games matter for a number of reasons, in the Angels’ case. It’s a chance for the new members of the team to gel.
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The Angels have a number of new starting players that are learning to play with each other. Cameron Maybin is now sharing the outfield with Mike Trout. Danny Espinosa is sharing the infield with Andrelton Simmons, Yunel Escobar, and Luis Valbuena. These players can’t just click and start playing like a World Series contender.
Becoming familiar with another players habits and instincts takes time. This will be key during the season and during the playoffs when the score does matter. Developing chemistry is so important in sports, it’s often one of the most overlooked keys to winning.
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All four major sports have a preseason for this exact reason. Sometimes, you hear the groans of the average fan who wishes to do away with preseason because the scores don’t matter. However, consider spring training similar to a beer league. It’s more of a way for the team to bond and get themselves ready for actual gameday shape.
While players like Trout always appear gameday ready, I’m sure taking in a few at-bats early before the season is helpful in preparing him for the season. Not only that; but playing games for the fans in Tempe who otherwise won’t get to see the Angels is rewarding.
Exhibition games are not overly important or dire to the success of any team. However, when a team is built during the offseason, having a handful of games to get in sync will help in October.