Tagged: Angels

After Awful Loss, EJ Is… Elated?

I am ECSTATIC! There is sooo much to talk about today! All-Star Game replacements, The Futures Game, this is going to be a fun blog! Where do I begin…?

How about telling us how you felt exactly when you saw Andy Pettitte’s donkey handed to him on a silver platter?

Andy Pettitte has a donkey?

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Oh yes, well that was not the most fun game of course, but who carrres, really? Life is too short to moan and groan about losing big to a team you knew you were going to lose to anyway. There’s so much baseball news to discuss!

Such as, THE FUTURES GAAAAAAME

I have always liked the Futures Game but I’ve disliked how it distracts me from watching the Yankees. Since we’re going to get hammered today, I’m probably just going to put it in picture in picture (I have a big TV, I can do that). The Futures Game, in case you’re new to the All-Star Break or just plain reclusive around this time, pits the best prospects in the system against the best prospects in the system. Chris Tillman will face down Desmond Jennings. Manny Banuelos(Yankees A ball guy, hard throwing 18-year old Mexican southpaw) against Angel Villalona, Madison Bumgarner against Danny Espinosa. It’s going to be great. Hopefully the Yankees’ prospects, Jesus Montero and Manuel Banuelos, will represent themselves and the organization very well. By the way, last year, Ramiro Pena was in the Futures’ Game. Did you know that? I sure did.

Now onto the replacements.

Trevor Hoffman replaces Jonathan Broxton

I had no idea Jonathan Broxton was injured, but apparently he is, so Trevor Hoffman(all time saves leader, really obscure dude) will take his place. Hoffman, now with the Brewers instead of the San Diego Padres where he’s most known, has had a great season after Milwaukee signed him. I think this is an appropriate replacement.

Carlos Pena replaces Dustin Pedroia, to participate in HR Derby

I don’t even care whether Ian Kinsler is better than Pena or not(you could make a good argument, better defense at a more valuable position, higher average, but Pena has been leading the league in homers since day one, also leading the league in walks, higher OPS+ than Kinsler, good defense), I’m just glad that Pedroia isn’t starting at 2nd. Look, he has a family problem, so whatever’s going on, I hope that it gets fixed. But he doesn’t deserve to start at 2nd, you know it, I know it, the American people know it(except for the New England area apparently).

Zach Duke replaces Matt Cain

This is also really big. Matt Cain has been one of the best pitchers in the game, but after taking a liner to the elbow, he’s going to be replaced by one of the more underrated pitchers in the game, Zach Duke, lefty of the Pittsburgh Pirates. Go and check out his numbers. And Julia, are you going to tell me that he doesn’t deserve it because he has as many wins as losses? If you do, that’d be hilarious. If you don’t, then you’d have to admit your extreme bias in saying that Tim Wakefield deserves to make the All-Star Game just because of his record, despite his very league average ERA. I believe this is what they call a checkmate, Julia.

The Song of the Day is The Seed (2.0) by The Roots. it’s a hip hop song, but it’s funky, souly, it’s upbeat, and it has a band! So, Julia, you might not dislike this song as much as other hip hop songs.

Two consecutive Julia references. Boy, I really need to stop talking to her over this blog.

Stay positive, Yankee fans.

-EJ the Kid From New York

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Goodness Gracious.

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I left as soon as they took the lead cause I wanted to watch the last three outs of Jonathan Sanchez’s no hitter. That no hitter is a thousand times more important than a tough loss like this one. We’ll recover. It was nice to be tied for first place, of course, but it’s actually quite possible to lose ballgames.

Yes, my optimism frustrates me too.

I could easily go on here and rant and rant about the awful pitching performance by Chamberlain that makes me wonder if he really should be in the rotation or not or the lack of use of Eric Hinske despite the fact that he wanted to be traded because of lack of use or how we wasted a nice day offensively with sloppy pitching and defense. But I don’t feel that anger. I am truly not an angry person, or not a person who gets angry at a baseball game. It’s funny, because I’ll curse and scream at a video game, but baseball games just do not anger me. They upset me, but after a game, I’m always able to take a deep breath and just forget about it.

Whatever I’m feeling, I bring it straight to you. That’s why they call me the Straight Talk Express! 😀

They don’t really call me that…

The Song of the Day is Common – Universal Mind Control. Warning, it is a whippersnapper hip hop song. I got your back, Julia. xP

Stay positive, Yankee fans.

-EJ the Kid From New York

 

Another Disappointing Finish

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That was a sucky game.

It was a good game, but the end result sucked. We got some runs off Lindstrom late, but Derek Jeter, being the sucky entity that he is, grounds out on the first pitch to end the game.

So, once again, we lose to a team we shouldn’t lose to. We’ve lost two series in a row to below .500 NL East teams, and are now 4 games out of the AL East. Luckily we still have a close lead over the Halos in the Wild Card.

So that’s it, I just wanted to make a quick blog today because I have video games to attend to and I don’t want to spend too much time away from them. Hopefully we can beat Tommy Hanson and the Braves tomorrow, remember, I’m going to be hosting that game, so you’d better come, I don’t want to be lonely.

The Song of the Day today is a song that I don’t like that much, I like it but not significantly, but it just seems like such a good baseball summer song. It sounds like a song you’d put a baseball highlight reel to, you know? That kinda song. It’s called All About You by Hoobastank.

Stay positive, Yankee fans. SHOW UP TOMORROW! Coverage starts at 6. Haha, “coverage”.

-EJ the Kid From New York

R.I.P. Nick Adenhart

Last night, 22-year old right handed Angels pitcher Nick Adenhart pitched 6 scoreless innings against the Oakland Athletics. That would turn out to be the last time Adenhart would ever pitch.

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Adenhart, former top can’t-miss pitching prospect for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, would later lose his life along with two others in a tragic car crash in California last night. With a sharp curveball and a good fastball, along with solid poise, it seemed that the Halos had a real future ace in their midst. However, that would sadly never come to be.

This has to be one of the biggest tragedies in 2009. Such great talent. What a shame.

The Yankees lost last night, a terrific…ly awful start by Chien-Ming Wang, however the Yanks are leading 3-2 as I speak in the top of the fifth inning today.

Hang in there, Angel fans.

Stay positive, Yankee fans.

-EJ the Kid From New York

Too Soon: The Stories of Fallen Active MLB Players Pt. 1

Baseball is such a fun and joyous sport. It’s rich history and all the great moments created by it can help a fan escape from the troubles of everyday life. The game seems so wonderful and innocent. However, this innocence can sometimes be perverted. Baseball players almost seem immortal throughout their entire careers; nobody ever sees them dying. Nobody ever can predict when somebody will go. And sometimes, a player will retire prior to retiring, completely unexpectedly and tragically. These are the stories of those players.

Lyman Bostock

Not enough baseball fans know the tale of Lyman Bostock, and it definitely should be shared more often. Lyman Wesley Bostock, Jr. was born on November 22nd, 1950. A left handed hitting outfielder from Birmingham, Alabama, Bostock was a very talented player, who had good speed, was a solid defensive outfielder, and could swing the bat as good as the rest of ’em. In his first full season, in 1976, a 25-year old Bostock hit .323 for the Minnesota Twins in 474 at bats, as well as hitting for the cycle on July 24, 1976. His batting average that year was fourth in the league. In 1977, Lyman topped that by hitting .336 for the Twins, with a 144 OPS+, had 90 RBI, 14 homers, and only struck out 59 times in 593 at bats. Bostock had the 2nd best average in the league, behind only Rod Carew. He finished 27th in the Most Valuable Player voting.

Bostock signed with the California Angels in 78, and that year, after struggling with the bat early in the season, ended up leading the Angels in batting average with a .296 clip, and although it was his least impressive full season, he still finished 23rd in the MVP voting.

In 1978, Bostock would not be alive to put up any numbers.

On September 23rd, 1978, in Gary, Indiana, Bostock fell victim to a bullet that wasn’t supposed to hit him. Let Wikipedia tell you the story.

“With a week remaining in the season, he went 2 for 4 with a walk in a Saturday afternoon game against the White Sox in Chicago, to raise his average to .296. Following the game, as he regularly did when in Chicago, Bostock visited his uncle, Thomas Turner, in nearby Gary, Indiana. After eating a meal with a group of relatives at Turner’s home, Bostock and his uncle went to visit Joan Hawkins, a woman whom Bostock had tutored as a teenager, but had not seen for several years. After the visit, Turner agreed to give Hawkins and her sister, Barbara Smith, a ride to their cousin’s house. Smith had been living with Hawkins while estranged from her husband, Leonard Smith. Unbeknownst to the group, Leonard Smith was outside Hawkins’s home in his car and observed the group’s departure in Turner’s car.

As Turner’s vehicle was stopped at a traffic signal at the intersection of 5th and Jackson streets, Smith’s car pulled up alongside them. Smith leaned out of his vehicle and fired one blast of a .410 caliber shotgun into the back seat of Turner’s car, where his wife and Bostock were seated. Smith did not know Bostock, but Smith later claimed that his wife was frequently unfaithful to him, and that based upon his observance of Bostock getting into the car with Barbara Smith, he concluded that the two were having an affair. In fact, Bostock had only met the woman twenty minutes previously, when he and his uncle arrived at Hawkins’s home.

Leonard Smith said that his lethal wrath was intended for his estranged wife. However, Bostock was seated between Barbara Smith and the position from which Leonard Smith was firing. The blast missed the woman and instead struck Bostock in the right temple. He died two hours later at a Gary hospital.”

Stay positive, Yankee fans.

-EJ the Kid From New York

Lackey’s Stiff Forearm: Is EJ Happy?

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So Angels ace John Lackey is revealed to have a strain and inflammation in his right forearm. According to Lackey, the team told him to “shut it down for a week” to see if his forearm can heal and let him begin throwing again. What does this mean? It means he won’t be able to take the mound on opening day for the LA Angels of Anaheim. And I might be happy.

Now hold on a second, why would I be happy?

Well, mainly because I don’t like John Lackey. I might actually dislike him. I certainly don’t hate him, but he is definitely one of my least favorite players. Why don’t I like him? Well, he pitches for the Angels, who always kill us Yanks and always fall to the Red Sox. He’s quite ugly; ever since I watched his heavy breathing in that 07 Clemens-Lackey showdown, I have never liked seeing him. I’ll make it clear as day: Lackey is hooomely.

But would that justify me being happy about him being injured? No, of course not. I don’t want people to get hurt, That’s just low. However, the truth is, I am just a liiiiittle bit happy. I mean, just a little. I know, I know, I’m the bad guy, as Cenk Uygur would say, I am totally wrong and I denounce and reject myself. But there’s a little part of me inside that’s like, “Oooo, Lackey’s injured, ehhh?” You know what I mean? I am so awful.

The only person who I’ll openly and honestly be pretty joyful if he were injured is Josh Beckett. Speaking of the Red Sox hurler(who is very overrated), he will get the Opening Day start for the Red Sox, which will just make him a little bit more overrated. You know that there are gonna be biased Sox fans out there saying “Well look at that! He’s going to start Opening Day for the Red Sox, and they have Matsuzaka and Lester! Beckett is so awesome, almost as much as Pedroia, who is the best hitter ever and is so awesome and makes me **** in my pants!” etc. etc.

Let’s have a little fun now here and do some comparison.

Lester vs. Beckett

Lester: 144 ERA+, 210 innings, 1.274 WHIP

Beckett: 115 ERA+, 174 innings, 1.187 WHIP

Now I know Beckett was more efficient with the K/BB ratio, but Lester was more effective, period. And I’m aware that it was an injury season for Beckett, but Lester was still and maybe is still the better pitcher.

 

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Matsuzaka was slightly worse than Beckett was last year, actually, even though Dice-K was apparently super effective and came in 4th place for the Cy Young. They’re all very close, though.

And now, let’s have even MORE fun, and compare the Yankees rotation with the Red Sox rotation.

Yankees vs. Red Sox: Who Has The Better Rotation?

Due to popular request, I’m going to compare the New York Yankees’ starting rotation with the one of the Boston Red Sox. Let’s have some fun, I guess.

Sabathia vs. Beckett

I would think this part is blatantly obvious, but let’s compare numbers regardless.

ERA+:

Sabathia – 162

Beckett – 115

WHIP

Sabathia – 1.115

Beckett – 1.187

Innings

Sabathia – 253

Beckett – 174

I mean come on now. It’s not even remotely close, other than the WHIP. Sabathia has been the better pitcher since 06, and it has been by a significant amount. Then you factor in that CC is a lefty and Beckett a right-hander… well, not close. Just not close.

Advantage: CC Sabathia

Wang vs. Lester

This is a very interesting comparison because Wang was the better pitcher every year except 08, and in 08 he was injured and missed the entire 2nd half.

ERA+

Lester – 144

Wang – 109

WHIP

Lester – 1.274

Wang – 1.316

Innings

Lester – 210

Wang – 95

It may even be more lopsided than Beckett vs. Sabathia. However, since Wang was significantly better in 06 and 07, the first two years of Jon Lester’s career, I think that the outcome iiiis…

Advantage: tie

Major controversy, no? Give your thoughts on it!

Burnett vs. Matsuzaka

This is another pretty close and tough one.

ERA+

Matsuzaka: 159

Burnett: 105

Ai ai ai…

WHIP

Matsuzaka: 1.324

Burnett: 1.342

Innings pitched

Burnett: 221

Matsuzaka: 167

See, it seems pretty lopsided until you look at the innings pitched. And then, you take into account that Burnett led the league in strikeouts in 2008, and then it’s closer. Matsuzaka still had the advantage in 08, but it’s closer. And then you look at the numbers of the previous year, 07, Dice-K’s first year: Burnett has the slight advantage. However, then there’s the fact that AJ Burnett is a large injury risk. With this in mind, the call for me is:

Advantage: Matsuzaka

Especially since Matsuzaka is in his 3rd year in 2009, and this could be big for him. Hey, I might be wrong. I sure hope I am.

Pettitte vs. Wakefield

Another tough, controversial one.

ERA+

Wakefield – 112

Pettitte – 98

WHIP

Wakefield – 1.182

Pettitte – 1.412

Innings

Pettitte – 204

Wakefield – 181

Wakefield was significantly better, with the most notable statistic being WHIP. Howeeeever, this WAS Pettitte’s worst year, clearly. Since 2008 was the only year in which Wakefield, as a full-time starting pitcher, was more effective than Andy Pettitte…

Advantage: Pettitte

It’s extremely controversial, I know, but I’d rather have Andy than Tim.

Chamberlain vs. Penny

Now this one isn’t close.

ERA+

Chamberlain – 171

Penny – 68

WHIP

Chamberlain – 1.256

Penny – 1.627

Innings

Chamberlain – 100

Penny – 94

Devastatingly significant.

I mean come on, it’s not even close. Chamberlain >>>> Penny. Even though Penny was an all-star in 2007 and 2006, I really doubt he’s going to go back to that form, especially in the AL East, especially since he’s still struggling with injury a bit.

Advantage: Chamberlain

So in total, the score is 2-1-1 in the Yankees’ favor. There you go, go ahead and debate now if you want.

Stay positive, Yankee fans.

-EJ the Kid From New York