Taylor’s Take: A Look Into the LA Angels Triple-A Affiliate
The SL Bees have continued their hot streak. With some help from C.J. Cron they were able to go 6-2 this past week. The Bees still have the top spot in the PCL division and are 2.5 games ahead from the second spot.
What Happened This Past Week
The Bees continued their great play. They have played two series since my last post, and both they went 3-1. In those games we saw C.J. Cron actually get some at-bats. Cron looked healthy from the get go and was called up after a few starts with the Bees. Manny Banuelos, who I raved about a few weeks ago, was sent to the bullpen. The Bees also saw two organizational records set. First, Nolan Fontana hit a walk off inside the park home run Saturday night, the first ever in Bees history. The team also saw a one hit shutout against the Baby Cakes on Tuesday, and set another organizational first.
Nate Smith, who had an amazing comeback after being on the disable list, was promptly put back on the 7 day disabled list. The team has not made any official statements on this other than he is on the DL. So, chances are his forearm wasn’t feeling one hundred percent after his last start. Chances are this is only cautionary, but is still something to definitely keep an eye on.
Welcoming Parker Bridwell
The LA Angels acquired Parker Bridwell last month after moving Huston Street to the DL. In his first game as a Bee, Bridwell was able to earn his first win. He ended the night after five innings pitched, giving up two hits, one walked batter, and striking out seven. His second start came this past Tuesday, where three Bees pitchers combined to pitch a one hit shutout. Bridwell pitched 7 innings, giving up the one hit and striking out 6. As of this writing Bridwell has yet to give up a run in a Bees uniform. The LA Angels just signed free agent Doug Fister. This puts the chances of any of the Bees starters getting a call up on the back burner for the time being. The addition of Bridwell bolsters an already strong pitching rotation. Let’s just hope he doesn’t go the way of Manny Banuelos.
Is Kaleb Cowart Finally Ready?
With the signing of Danny Espinosa the LA Angels hoped to see something that they hadn’t with Johnny Giavotella. So far Espinosa’s defense has been better. His offense on the other hand has been abysmal. Espinosa’s average currently sits at .152.
Kaleb Cowart is not a new name in the LA Angels organization. He has been given two shots with the Angels the past two seasons. In 2015 he batted .174, and .176 in 2016.
This season with the Bees Cowart has been showing signs of greatness. So far he has a .302 average, 3 home runs, and 16 RBIs. He has played the most games out of all the Bees position players as well. If Espinosa cannot find a good footing this year, Cowart very well could have another shot in the majors. Hopefully his next chance won’t be wasted like the past two years.