The August 6th, 2012 edition of daily news for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim including Angels file an official protest over Friday's loss, C.J. Wilson pushed by coaching staff to be more efficient, Takahashi throws a tantrum in the bullpen and much more...
The Story: The Angels officially filed their protest for the controversial call in Friday's game.
The Monkey Says: They aren't going to win. They should, but they won't. I just don't think MLB would ever allow that to happen because it would be a massive black eye for the umpires. The brutal part is Scioscia thinks he has a good case because the umps admitted Konerko was outside the basepath. The problem is that they judged that Konerko did not interfere with the throw. Watching the replay, it seems pretty clear to me (and I am horribly biased) that it did. But that's the thing, it is a judgment call.
The Story: C.J. Wilson held a strategy meeting with the coaching staff where he was pushed to be more efficient with his pitches.
The Monkey Says: Good luck with that. Efficiency has been one of Wilson's biggest issues since he shifted to the rotation. When he first signed, that was one thing Rangers fans were quick to point out as a major flaw (after they finished calling him a douchebag and a choke artist, of course).
The Story: Hisanori Takahashi had a tantrum (sort of) in the bullpen after he was passed over in a key spot during a game last week.
The Monkey Says: Scioscia was completely right in passing him over because had he come in Napoli would've been called on to pinch-hit. Also, Takahashi is bad at baseball. So there's that too. I imagine a lot of his "tantrum" had more to do with his diminished role and recent demotion to the minors than it did not getting the call in that one specific game situation.
The Story: Erick Aybar is expected to be activated from the disabled list today.
The Monkey Says: And not a moment too soon. Aybar has had a rough season at the plate, but he is a step up from Maicer Izturis with the bat and a big step up (most of the time) with the glove.
The Story: Jordan Walden will start throwing off a mound again today.
The Monkey Says: If all goes well, he could be activated in what I would estimate to be two weeks. Waldo is hardly a savior considering the kind of season he has had, but he'd be a easily better option than the likes of David Carpenter and Jason Isringhausen. Plus, the Angels just need a fresh arm. There is even some hope that with his arm fully healthy, he could actually pitch like a high quality late-inning reliever again.
The Story: Vernon Wells is struggling to find a groove at the plate.
The Monkey Says: Really, you think so? Tell me something we didn't all know back in April of 2011.
The Story: The Angels need more than Pujols and the other big names for their offense to click.
The Monkey Says: Isn't that true of every team? It certainly does make a lot of sense right now because part of the reason the Angel bullpen is killing them right now is because the offense hasn't been giving them huge leads (save the first meltdown in Texas).
The Story: The Greinke trade is bold but still under review.
The Monkey Says: Well, duh. Everyone knows the Angels traded for him hoping that he would re-sign long-term. Where I disagree a little bit is in using the post-season as a criteria. If the Angels flameout in the ALDS, but Greinke pitches great in his lone start, you can't say picking him up was the problem. Maybe that's just me though, I'm more worried about Greinke re-signing than the post-season success determining the quality of this deal.
The Story: Is the AL West now the toughest division in baseball?
The Monkey Says: I think at the end of the year, the answer will be the AL East is slightly better, but that is just because I expect the A's to cool off again before long. Hopefully starting today.