Thursday, March 18, 2004

Natch, I'm not the only one to cook up an Angels season preview (see below). The same day I finished and posted mine, David Peng's went up at Baseball Primer. Years ago, when I had a real name, David and I were on the same side of a number of arguments over on the Angels newsgroup. So it didn't surprise me in the least that both David and I projected a 96-66 record for the Lads this season. I'll continue to link to other previews as I come across them online.

(Speaking of bygone newsgroup debates, David and I often found ourselves debating Stephen Smith, who runs the indispensable Future Angels website. Stephen gets to a lot of Angels minor league games, and his Top 10 prospect list includes video clips. I highly recommend Dallas McPherson taking on Randy Johnson in its entirety, but there's a lot of good stuff all over the site.)

I got a link today from the Richard Ceccarelli of the Pearly Gates, a good Angels blog I've just found since I've started mine. Richard worries that Mike Scoscia thinks that Erstad advancing a runner is as good as Erstad hitting a home run. I'm not too worried; this is the kind of thing a manager says when a player can't really do something. Of course, the Angels have long had a blind spot about Erstad, and have long exaggerated the importance of first base defense, for that matter (and this is coming from a guy who still claims Wally Joyner as his favorite player).

Speaking of previews, the Baseball Prospectus team looks at the Angel offense and sees only a 12 run improvement over last season. I'm not buying, but maybe I'm just to attached to my Halo-shaded glasses. BPro also reports that "the park formerly known as Edison International is projected to be a better hitter's park this year than last," which is the first time I've heard of running projections for ballparks ...

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