Los Angeles Angels: The curious case of Ricky Nolasco
By Joshua Lea
The Los Angeles Angels are four games from a wild card spot. While the starting rotation looks grim, there’s still a chance the Angels make the post season.
The Los Angeles Angels are 52-55 with two months until October. They’re four games back from a Wild Card spot. They have a large hill to climb in order to gain games on American league teams like the Yankees and Royals. However, If pitchers like Ricky Nolasco continue to perform well, they might have a chance.
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The Angels opened the month of August against the Phillies at home. Nolasco pitched six innings giving up one run. He also recorded five strikeouts. Nolasco has struggled to keep his ERA under 5.00 throughout this season. However, most Angels fans would agree that he is a better pitcher than his numbers would indicate.
Still, Nolasco was charged with his third win since May. In fact, he’s 5-12 on the season. Still, there’s some hope that he can pitch well during the month of August. The Angels will face the Oakland A’s twice. They’ll also face the Rangers, Mariners, Orioles, Astros, and Nationals in Washington.
If the Angels are to make a run at the Wild Card, Nolasco will have to pitch like an ace. Tyler Skaggs and Andrew Heaney are still rehabbing and may not see game action for the Angels for another week or two. There is little hope that Garrett Richards makes it back on the mound this season as of now.
One thing is 100% clear. The Angels need to get younger and healthier on the mound. Nolasco and Jesse Chavez are currently the hope for the season. However, they should not be apart of the Angels future. In fact, Chavez and Nolasco have a combined 10.50 ERA this season.
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This brings about the youth versus experience debate. However, in the Angels case, this is more of a healthy versus injured situation. Until Matt Shoemaker, Alex Meyer, Heaney, Skaggs, and Richards return, we really don’t know just how good the Angels are.