|Angels’ season has been a disappointment||| Print ||
Written by Jim Mancari (Contact & Archive) on September 28, 2012
Usually when a team is fighting for a playoff spot in the final weeks of the season, the word "disappointing" is rarely thrown around. It's a long season and being involved in a pennant race is exciting for the fans and the players alike.
But for the 2012 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, the word "disappointing" is actually an understatement.
As the season winds down, the Angels are trailing the Oakland A's for the final wild card spot in the AL. It's funny that the team with the $155 million payroll (Angels) is looking up at the team with the $50 million payroll (A's).
On paper, the Angels put together a team this offseason that was easily considered a favorite to represent the AL in the World Series. Analysts and fans were gearing up for a tight AL West season-long battle between the Angels and the Texas Rangers for bragging rights in the division.
Albert Pujols brought his slugging bat out west, and C.J. Wilson defected from the reigning AL champs to suit up for the Angels. The team appeared to have a strong combination of pitching and hitting that would have carried it into the playoffs.
And this was all before Mike Trout was even thought of as the team's savior. Trout started the year in the minors, and frankly if the Angels got off to a great start, we might not have seen the potential AL MVP and Rookie of the Year.
However, the Angels got off to a brutally slow start. Pujols looked lost at the plate, and the supposed strong pitching was nowhere to be found. It seemed as if baseball's most egregious financial mistake was coming to fruition.
But then about midseason, Pujols began heating up, and Trout was establishing himself as the game's next best thing. Mark Trumbo displayed his big time power, and Torii Hunter looked rejuvenated. Maybe a playoff spot would be an option after all.
Jered Weaver pitched like a Cy Young candidate, and then the Angels even brought in Zack Greinke to bolster the rotation just in time for a playoff push.
Based on their record, the Angels have actually had good season and will likely win 90-plus games with a strong finish. But the A's have played way above their heads and appear to be the team of destiny.
If the scenario of winning 90 games but missing the playoffs pans out, it would still be considered a disappointment since the Angels' slow start would come back to haunt them.
We can't completely count out the Angels based on their potential, but then again that same potential yielded little results early in the season. As they say in baseball, the Angels might just have to "wait until next year."