I was minding my own business, eating lunch, and I came across this abomination from Jon Heyman. Anger welled up deep inside of me, and I tried to ignore it. Tried to go on my happy way. But no. This cannot go unanswered.
One of the most impressive facets of any team this spring is the depth of the Angels' rotation.
I agree. Did you say the White Sox? No? Who? The Angels?
For the position of No. 5 starter, which for the vast majority of teams is manned by a journeyman, an unproven kid or worse, the Angels will choose between Scott Kazmir, a former ace with the Rays, and Joel Pineiro, maybe the second best free-agent starter signed this winter.
A former ace as their #5 starter? How lucky they are! Was Bartolo Colon not available?
Despite the loss of John Lackey to Boston, the Angels still possess the deepest, most balanced rotation in baseball.
This is not true. It's also not supported. But it is asserted!
The Red Sox, Yankees and White Sox rotations probably have stronger cases to be cited as the best overall starting staffs based on their top-heavy strengths.
Ah, so what you're saying is, you started this column with a presupposition, did, what, 10 seconds of research, and then realized your premise was insane and not supported by facts. And so you're going to change it and apologize, and talk about how the Angels are really in trouble this year, because Texas and Seattle improved, and because the As have 7 good starters, and because their offense is old and they don't have power and because Joe Saunders sucks. I respect that.
But it's hard to make a case any team has a rotation as solid as the Angels from top to bottom
Oh. So, on one hand, you're saying that the Red Sox, Yankees and White Sox have stronger cases to be the best overall starting staffs, because they have great talent at the top of the rotation. However, you're going to argue that the bottom of the rotation is so much better than those three teams that it clearly outweighs the advantage those three have otherwise.
No? You're just going to continue to assert things without basis, using only your uneducated and ignorant opinion as your only form of tautological evidence?
That’s cool. Have I introduced you to our good friend Joe Morgan?
Some teams can't get past the idea that the Angels will have a solid or better starter going every day and night, barring injury.
I can't get past that idea because it's not true. And so I'm ignoring it.
The plan is for Jered Weaver...to post the best year of any Angels pitcher last year (and at 16-8 with a 3.75 ERA, that includes Lackey), to get the Opening Day start, with Ervin Santana and Joe Saunders manning the Nos. 2 and 3 spots, depending on matchups.
Love that plan.
Inside Angels Front Office
"OK, so we're losing Lackey to free agency. It hurts, but in order to make up for it we're just going to have Weaver do better than last year. Meeting adjourned".
Kazmir and Pineiro, who resurrected his career with the Cardinals and came to Los Angeles for a very reasonable $18-million, two-year deal, will form baseball's best rotation bottom, maybe the best in years.
First of all, (sic). Second of all, the Kazmir and Piniero shouldn't be the 4 and 5 starters, because they're not the 4th and 5th best starters on the team. Piniero is the second-best. Putting him as the 5th starter in some arbitrary, poorly thought-out column for SI doesn't make him the 5th starter any more than me designating AJ Burnett as the 5th starter for the Yankees. Thirdly, even if Kazmir and Piniero were the 4th and 5th starters, and even if the Angels had two other starters better than Kazmir and Piniero, and they don't, then those two guys still aren't better than the Red Sox, the White Sox and the Yankees. Of course, he's done talking about those three teams anyway.
Competing GMs see no great weaknesses,
You polled Dayton Moore, didn't you.
but one said if there is one he could see it as Saunders, who
slipped a bit last year.
Also he sucks. P.S. He also pitched to his FIP last year, which means he didn't get lucky like he did in 2008. Unless you count getting 9.44 runs of support per nine innings "lucky."
His record (16-7) was nearly identical compared to 2008 (17-7)
HE HAD ALMOST THE SAME NUMBER OF WINS? THEN WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT?
but his ERA was more than one run higher (4.60 from 3.41).
Oh, you're using nerd stats like "ERA". Psh. I prefer Win %. Basement-dweller.
"We have some very good interchangeable parts,'' Angels pitching coach Mike Butcher said. "Our guys match up with anybody.''
Like, are you playing Legos? Or...?
The Angels tried hard for pitching superstar Roy Halladay as a Lackey replacement and made what appears to have been a very good offer (shortstop Erick Aybar, Saunders and outfield prospect Peter Bourjosis believed to have been the bid, as first reported by theToronto Sun).
When you say "very good offer", you mean "very poor to poor" offer, right?
But talks never got going. That could be because the Jays preferred Kyle Drabek but might also be because Halladay, who had a no-trade clause, preferred to stay on the East Coast and train in Florida; he is known to have rejected Texas and Seattle outright before landing in Philadelphia.
It could be because the Jays refused outright to consider such a mediocre offer, when they had other, much better offers. Or, it could be for another unrelated reason! I heard that the Jays refused it because when the Angels sent over their offer, they didn't send a gift basket along with it. Faux pas. Major faux pas.
Pineiro eventually got the spot vacated by Lackey when he signed for $18 million over two years, a very reasonable deal considering the year he had in St. Louis. "Lackey was a bulldog, but we picked up Joel Pineiro, who had better numbers. I know it was the National League, but he still had better numbers,'' said Angels star Torii Hunter. Pineiro was 15-12 with a 3.49 ERA to Lackey's 11-8 mark and 3.83 ERA.
That is true, Torii. You're very wise. Look at all those extra wins he had in St. Louis! Championship: booked.
The depth of their rotation was supposed to be the Angels' big advantage last October,
But due to the fact that their 3, 4 and 5 pitchers actually suck, this turned out to be something that I made up in my head. Sorry for the mixup!
but scheduled off days and rainouts conspired to diminish that alleged edge as they were eliminated in the ALCS by the Yankees in six games.
Evil, evil Yankee-rain. Conspiratorial Yankee-rain. Expensive, over-paid Yankee-rain. Unfair Yankee-rain.
The Angels wound up playing nine games over 24 days, rendering the depth virtually meaningless, as the Yankees, a team with only three dependable starters, and the Phillies, with only two by the end, advanced to the World Series.
Sometimes you don't have to write anything in the non-bold section, because what was written in bold was so dumb that it speaks for itself. I love those times.
This is one of those times.
The powers at Major League Baseball promised to tighten up the postseason schedule this year, which should play into the Angels' hands.
If you weren't convinced by the genius of Torii Hunter, race-baiter extraordinaire, then you should be convinced now. Everything is lining up just right for the Angels. Now they just need to get a #1 and #2 pitcher, slot Weaver in the #3 slot, cut Saunders, Santana and Kazmir and slot Piniero in the #5 slot.
A lot of folks are wondering whether the Angels get that far this year after losing Figgins, and many are making the Mariners, who have co-aces after acquiring Cliff Leeto pair with Felix Hernandez, this year's chic pick. But it might be a mistake to bet against the Angels. As Scioscia said of his five studs, "They give us a chance to win every night.''
A lot of folks are thinking: hey, the Angels got worse and their competitors got better. Maybe the competitors have a chance this year?
Game, set, match, Jon Heyman.
Or is it...HE'S NOT DONE! Let's take a look at a few of his other "best ofs", shall we?
Best Infield (including catcher): Yankees
Both World Series teams from last year have superb infields. But when one team is spending $93 million on these five positions alone (counting catcher), you have to hope they're the best.
Hold on, does that mean the Mets have the second-best infield? Or does salary not count if it's on the DL? Or do you only cite examples and “facts” when they only marginally support your opinion, an opinion which is easily more ignorant than your average 13 year-old fantasy baseball player?
And they are. That figure represents a slightly higher than average payroll for one entire team.
But you still can't quibble with how this money was spent. This is the heart of the best team in baseball. Comprising the fabulous five are two legends (third baseman Alex Rodriguez and shortstop Derek Jeter) and three others who are multiple All-Stars with at least some chance of making the Hall of Fame someday (catcher Jorge Posada, first baseman Mark Teixeira and second baseman Robinson Cano).
The infield is made up of All-Stars and legends! They are held together by grit and love of the game! Therefore, BESTEST!! Evidence: NOT NEEDED!
Best Outfield: Dodgers
Even though Manny Ramirez showed signed [sic]
"Showed signed"? Does anyone edit these? Or is Heyman just so awesome that he has a "no-edit" clause that allows him to regurgitate his thoughts directly from his brain to the internet? Was that clause directly negotiated by Scott Boras, Heyman's agent and erstwhile boyfriend??
of slowing down last year, and apparently still can't decide whether he's playing no more years with the Dodgers, or five, I'll take the Dodgers trio. Matt Kemp is an underappreciated star who can do it all,
HE ACTUALLY CAN! +1 for Heyman.
and Andre Ethier had more walk-off hits than anyone in baseball.
Which obviously proves his greatness.
The Dodgers were wise to lock up Kemp and Ethier for two years each, avoiding a potentially acrimonious arbitration battle in consecutive years with a pair of youngsters who might not be able to handle it.
So Ethier can apparently handle the pressure of late-game situations but wouldn't be able to take the scary arbitration room. What a sissy.
Best Lineup Balance: Phillies
The Phillies' lineup is ridiculously good, and was only enhanced by the addition of Polanco, who fits perfectly into the No. 2 hole between Jimmy Rollins and all their big-time bashers,
Polanco's .331 OBP is certainly monstrous. Almost as good as Nick Punto's .337.
starting with Utley, Howard and Jayson Werth, who may be the most underrated player in baseball. "He's one of the best 15 players in the game,'' one competing GM said. Raul Ibanez doesn't appear to be slowing down, Shane Victorino embodies the "good country hardball player'' manager Charlie Manuel prefers,
[Cue Joe Morgan]: WOOOOOOOOOOOO love me some good country hardball!!!!
and eve [sic]
Seriously, this is a professional website. Get it together.
Ruiz is dangerous in important moments. One Dodgers person said that team identified Pedro Feliz as the only out in the lineup, and he's now in Houston. Judging by all the screaming and hand-wringing going on in Red Sox Nation,
[Cue Bill Simmons]: NO ONE OUTSIDE RED SAWX NATION COULD POSSIBLY UNDERSTAND OUR PAIN! NO ONE DENIES THIS!
this is going to come as a surprise. But while the Red Sox no longer have Manny Ramirez in his prime or David Ortiz in his prime, either, for that matter, they also have very good balance.
Phew, they have balance. Simmons and Gammons can rest easy. Balance here is defined as "being good"; evidence of having balance is demonstrated by Heyman saying you have balance. Got that?
The Yankees have a great lineup but lost a bit of their balance
Uh oh, apparently balance in the AL East is a zero-sum game.
by letting Johnny Damon and Hideki Matsui leave as free agents. Nick Johnson can get on base when he plays.
GASP...did he just reference OBP?!?!
And so on and so forth. I don't really have the time or energy to go all the way through this, but needless to say, Heyman has cemented his reputation as an analytical giant. We can all only hope to learn at the feet of the master.
/starts rumor about a Boras client
//refuses to acknowledge that he's a Boras lackey
///lazily composes a column so he can expense his trip to florida and Arizona