Originally written on Monkey with a Halo  |  Last updated 11/16/14

Dan Haren is back, baby!  And the Angels have taken yet another series from Texas.  More exclamation points!!!! Better than that, Bobby Wilson went OFF!!!!  EVEN MORE EXCLAMATION POINTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

With all due respect to Dan Haren, who pitched a fine game and gave the Angels a massive shot in the arm by giving them the hope of now having three reliable starters, how can we not talk about Bobby Wilson single-handedly saving the Halos from blowing this game.

Think about it, the Halos were up 3-2 and about to turn it over to their usually good bullpen.  But then, just when we least expected it (which is always), Bobby strikes!  He didn't just accidentally run into a pitch off and poke it over the shallow wall down the line, he straight up crushed it into the bullpen.  Again, this is BOBBY WILSON we are talking about against All-Star Matt Harrison who entered the game allowing eight dingers all season.

That homer and his goofy "fat catcher jig" (see GIF below) after the homer clearly injected some new life into the Halo lineup which had been lulled to sleep after Pujols' own homer in the second.  They tacked on two more runs against Ogando, runs that were very much needed it turns out.

But wait!  There's more!!  No exaggeration here, I literally jumped off the couch in the bottom of the eighth when Bobby got into yet another pitch, thinking he had gone yard yet again.  Alas, it was only a ground-rule double, but still... Bobby Wilson!

It was Wilson's first homer of the season.  It was his first three-hit game of the season.  His seven total bases in the game equaled his cumulative total bases in July entering the game, and also in the entire month of June.

BOBBY WILSON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  ALL THE EXCLAMATION POINTS EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Angels 7, Rangers 4

Game Notes

  • Paul Emmel did his part to make sure that Dan Haren's first start back from the DL was not an easy one.  While things got better in the middle innings, Emmel was squeezing the strike zone down to the size of an iPod Nano in the first inning.  To his credit, Danny kept his cool and worked through it.  Overall, I think Orel Hershiser summed it up best saying that Haren's cutter and splitter looked very sharp (just ask Josh Hamilton) and were down in the zone, which are great signs.  He did miss up with his fastball a bit more than one would like, but his velocity was improved and knowing Haren, it is a safe assumption that some of his fastball issues were that he was too pumped up and overthrowing it a tad.
  • I almost feel bad for Texas fans as the ESPN commentators spent roughly half the game talking about how badly Josh Hamilton was struggling.  It had me flashing back to Pujols in April.  Really, it must've been torturous.  Like I said, I almost feel bad for them.
  • We are in dangerous territory, people.  Kevin Jepsen is starting to look, dare I say it?  Good.  Like very good.  Like almost good enough to trust in late innings.  I feel like this is some sort of long con being pulled on us and just when we (and, more importantly, Scioscia) finally buy in, he is going to rip our hearts out, stomp on it, light it on fire, stomp on it again and then eat it.

Halo Hero

Dance, monkey, dance!

(GIF via @LookoutLanding and SB Nation)



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