The 2023 season has been an embarrassing one on many levels for the Los Angeles Angels. The team not only wasted a historic season from Shohei Ohtani, but they did it after going all in at the trade deadline and immediately collapsing.
The Angels showed some growth in a couple of areas, but for the most part, were a major disappointment once again. This is their eighth straight year with a losing record and their ninth straight year of no playoffs.
The season did end on a positive note with the Angels winning a series against the Oakland Athletics. Winning the season's final game was important for two reasons.
LA Angels avoid most embarrassing loss of all by defeating the Athletics in the season's final game
The Angels began the season in Oakland and lost a heartbreaking game to get things underway. That wound up setting the tone for the whole season. The Angels did take the next two games to win that series, but losing that opener felt like a missed opportunity. Another opportunity to sweep Oakland the next time they played was missed when Jose Suarez was roughed up for seven runs in five innings.
After playing Oakland twice in April, the Angels didn't see the A's again until September. The Angels were in the midst of their collapse when that series occurred, and it showed as they were swept by the lowly A's hitting a new low. Getting swept by the Athletics tied the season series between these two teams.
The Angels needed to win the final series of the year in order to win the season series against the 50-112 Athletics and they did indeed take that series thanks to a win in the final game.
With that win the Angels improved to 73-89 on the year. Had they lost, the Angels not only would've reached 90 losses, but they would've finished with a worse record than the one they had in 2022. This Angels team went all in to try and win in 2023 and obviously finished with an embarrassing record, but it would've been even worse had they finished with a worse record than that 2022 team.
Overall, the season was a major disappointment of course, but getting a win on the final day was a good thing for those reasons.