The LA Angels made headlines on Thursday when they dealt for Justin Upton and Brandon Phillips. After their first series with the Halos, one has stepped up while the other has struggled.
The LA Angels lost their weekend series to the Texas Rangers, but there are definitely positives to take away from it. The two new kids in town have both contributed in good ways, but Upton has done great at the plate while Phillips has been mediocre.
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Upton did not get off to a great start with the Halos. With a routine pop fly, Upton botched it as he took his eyes off the ball. However, he made up for it later in the game with two hits and two runs.
Phillips’ debut was mediocre, as he went 1-5 with a walk and strikeout. His struggles continued into the second game, when he went 0-5 in the Halo’s victory. However, Upton contributed one hit, one run, and one walk. Nevertheless, the Angels were able to play team ball and win the game while the new guys got adjusted.
The series finale was when the new faces in Anaheim finally came around. While Phillips contributed by going two for five and scoring twice, it was Upton who really shined. In his five plate appearances, Upton was able to knock two hits in the game while also drawing a walk three times. He came around to score once as well.
While neither of the new players has blown away Halo fans, they have both been contributing well since their arrival. Even without Upton and Phillips playing out of their minds, the difference they make in the lineup is without doubt. The Angels now have the flexibility and depth to move players all around the lineup.
The Halos may have lost the series, but things are looking up for the team. The offense has averaged eight runs a game since their arrival. The pitching staff will also be starting Garrett Richards on Tuesday in his first start since his rehab.
Whether the Halos make the playoffs or not, the end of the season is going to be fun to watch.