LA Angels News

LA Angels Series Preview: Finding fresh air in Cleveland

By Ryan Falla
ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 05: Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim reacts to striking out looking during the sixth inning of a game against the Oakland Athletics at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on June 05, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 05: Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim reacts to striking out looking during the sixth inning of a game against the Oakland Athletics at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on June 05, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /
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CLEVELAND, OHIO – JULY 07: Jo Adell #25 of the American League at bat during the second inning against the National League during the All-Stars Futures Game at Progressive Field on July 07, 2019 in Cleveland, Ohio. The American and National League teams tied 2-2. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OHIO – JULY 07: Jo Adell #25 of the American League at bat during the second inning against the National League during the All-Stars Futures Game at Progressive Field on July 07, 2019 in Cleveland, Ohio. The American and National League teams tied 2-2. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

Testing new waters

What else is there left to talk about? The team has recycled through this same narrative time and time again all season. It gets old very fast when the team flip-flops from “possible contender” to “way out of it” to “possible contender” over and over again. It gets extremely exhausting, especially from a writers standpoint, because you can only recycle the same script time and time again before it feels like there’s nothing left to talk about. The Angels starting staff isn’t going to be very good going into this series. We may see something interesting here or there if the team decides to give another young kid a shot like Patrick Sandoval, who is currently K/9 of 11 on the season.

I know Sandoval’s ERA doesn’t look the best in Triple-A (6.14), but in Minor League evaluations ERA isn’t the most productive stat to base evaluations off of. This is especially true in the PCL, which is a hitters league to the point of almost recreating the steroid era in baseball. I’m not going to try to sugarcoat things and act like his high ERA is a moot point, because it’s not at all, but his strikeout peripherals are still looking decent even in an over-the-top hitters league. He still needs to get a handle on his walks at the Triple A level, but aside from that point the Angels are hard up for starters and the season is practically over, so why not give him a go?

Maybe they don’t let Sandoval come in for a Major League look in this series, but at some point it would be good to see where he is at for the future development wise. Unless the Angels are protecting his value by leaving him in Triple-A, but if that’s the case they aren’t protecting too much value with his middling ERA. With the season essentially hitting the canvas and being down for the count the Angels would be apt to try whatever they can to help this starting staff survive 2019.

The Angels are in a point where they can start experimenting with the team, maybe not a ton of experimentation right now though since they are still numerically within a wild card spot. Something needs to be done to change up the formula that has been failing on this team all season, maybe not in hopes of reviving 2019, but with foresight in protecting their competitive chances in 2020 by seeing what factors may be in play for next season.

On that note maybe we’ll be seeing Jo Adell soon. If the Angels aren’t going to be competing that’s really the only thing that will keep fans coming to see the games. Plus, if Adell comes up and looks as good as he can be it will make the Angels off-season a little easier/harder. Easier in the sense that they’ll know they can roll into 2020 with Adell manning a corner outfield spot, yet harder in the sense that they’ll need to figure out where to make space for him given Justin Upton’s immovable (and awful) contract and the decision on Kole Calhoun’s option looming in the distance.

Max Stassi brings a defensive presence behind the plate. Next

I’m not giving up on 2019 entirely, but at the same time it’s about that part of the season where we start moving past the failures of this year and look towards the positives coming in the near future.

Being an Angel fan is suffering

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