Phil Nevin's decision to pinch-hit Luis Rengifo was completely unjustifiable

Los Angeles Angels v Colorado Rockies
Los Angeles Angels v Colorado Rockies / Dustin Bradford/GettyImages

The Los Angeles Angels lost a frustrating series to the Rockies who currently have the worst record in the National League. Yes, the 25-1 game was fun, but to have that game sandwiched in between two losses is unacceptable.

The Angels lost the series finale 4-3 as the bats were mostly asleep the night after breaking their franchise record in runs scored.

Tyler Anderson had a pretty solid outing, allowing just three runs in six innings striking out nine in the defeat. The offense is the big story, and one late-game Phil Nevin decision was very hard to justify.

Phil Nevin's decision to avoid newest LA Angels infielder Mike Moustakas was an unjustifiable one

The Angels looked out of it for most of yesterday's game as they trailed 4-2 in the ninth. After a Brandon Drury leadoff single, Hunter Renfroe hit into his second double play of the game to put the Angels on the brink of defeat. Scoring two against a tough reliever in Justin Lawrence with two outs and nobody on was not going to be an easy task, but hitting three home runs on three pitches is harder and the Angels managed to do that the night before. They weren't going down easily.

Eduardo Escobar tripled, and then Mickey Moniak hit a double to get the Angels within one. With the open base, the Rockies opted to walk Matt Thaiss intentionally to get to the ninth spot of the order. Often teams don't put the go-ahead run on base, but that was a risk Bud Black was willing to take.

David Fletcher started at shortstop but was lifted for a pinch runner earlier. Andrew Velazquez was due up, but with the game on the line you knew the Angels wouldn't go to him.

They were down to two options on the bench. They had Luis Rengifo who's struggled all season long, and they had the newly-acquired Mike Moustakas who was acquired for his bat in a trade with the Rockies shortly after Saturday's game ended.

Moustakas was present and on the bench, seemingly available, but Nevin opted to use Luis Rengifo in the biggest spot of the game. Rengifo did have a pretty good at-bat working a full count, but he grounded out weakly to third base to end the game.

Rengifo is hitting .204 with a .587 OPS this season and looks like a prime DFA candidate. He's slashed .194/.292/.291 against righties this season, and even last season when Rengifo had his breakout with 17 home runs he was a below average hitter against righties. He's always been at his best agianst left-handed pitchers.

Meanwhile, Mike Moustakas, a guy hitting .264 with a .792 OPS against righties, was right there on your bench. Why would Nevin possibly think using Rengifo would be a good idea?

When asked about whether he thought about using Moustakas as a pinch hitter instead of Rengifo, Nevin simply said "no" with no follow-up. Nevin being so stubborn with a guy who has an OPS over 200 points lower against righties than Moustakas is fascinating.

It's possible Moustakas wasn't activated prior to the game I suppose since the Kevin Padlo DFA was never made official by Angels PR, but he was on the bench. The fact that Nevin didn't simply say that makes me believe he was available and Nevin just chose to not use him.

The Angels had their chances to win this game. Hunter Renfroe grounded into two crushing double plays and the Angels failed to hit much against a starter with an ERA over 7.00 after a 25-run outburst, but that ninth inning call was pretty clearly the incorrect one. The Angels had a chance and sent the wrong guy up there.