How crazy is it that David Fletcher and Ty Buttrey are two of the best players in baseball in their positions as of right now? Coming into this season many saw Fletcher as a solid roving infielder who would put up a solid enough offensive line to keep him in the lineup.
Three months into the season and we’re seeing him perform as the most consistent performer on the Angels, even more so than Mike Trout at this point. Trout is a once-in-a-lifetime talent, don’t get me wrong, but even he has said himself how his swing has been off most of the year.
Meanwhile Fletcher has been the most consistent hitter on the Angels with a .322/.377/.459 slash line with a surprising 4 HR’s and 12 doubles on the season. His clutch numbers are fantastic as well with Fletcher posting a .316/.381/.395 line with men on base. With two outs in the inning he’s hitting .311/.373/.426 with 5 doubles and a triple in 61 AB’s.
Next to Fletcher’s over-achieving performance is Ty Buttrey’s phenomenal prowess on the mound. Buttrey has pitched 29.1 innings of 1.23 ERA baseball along with 36 K’s and 7 BB’s. If that line isn’t good enough for an All-Star bid then I’m not sure what is. The Angels are fielding an under-the-radar team that is far better than many people understand them to be.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, while this Angels team continues to trim the fat as the season goes on the talent will only shine brighter and brighter. With Cody Allen losing time in the bullpen we’ve seen Buttrey given an expanded role and he’s brought the Angels far more success than if they relied on Allen as a high-leverage reliever.
These are two critical components to the Angels success in both this series and this season. Fletcher is exactly what the Angels have been needing for years out of the #9/#1 hole in the lineup. It’s great to finally have someone in front of Trout who is a serious threat to get on base and score on a consistent basis. It’s great to have great hitters like Trout in the lineup, but it’s the powerful support of under-the-radar hitters like David Fletcher who can make this a truly dangerous lineup.
Having Buttrey pitch in high-leverage situations has already been a lifesaver for the Angels on numerous occasions and will continue to be so, especially in key series such as this A’s series.