Thursday, January 27, 2005

-The Angels Mailbag on the official site has the following headline: "Can Yan beat lefties?" My initial response was: "Lefties? Yan can't even beat righties! Esteban Yan sucks."

But I don't write for MLB.com, Doug Miller does, and in his answer he declares: "Also, interestingly enough, hitters had more problems (.255 average in 42 1/3 innings) against Yan last year from the left side than they did from the right side (.292 in 44 2/3 innings)."

It's not just batting average, either. Lefties hit 255/332/339 against Yan last year in 165 AB, while righties hit 292/351/497 against him in 171 AB. What gives?

A big part of it was batting average on balls in play. When the ball was in the park, lefties had a .311 average against Yan, but righties had a .339. That's almost the whole difference right there.

Over the course of 2002-2004, RHB hit 285/341/463 in 492 AB against Yan, and LHB hit 274/353/444 in 387 AB. I don't see him as a reverse-type pitcher who is better against lefthanders.

--BPro's Triple Play Thingamajigger discusses the Angels today, and has this interesting passage:

The Angels signed Cuban defector Kendry Morales to a six-year contract in early December .... Unfortunately, the Angels have nowhere to put him. The Angels have committed to Dallas McPherson at third base and Darin Erstad just won a Gold Glove at first base. Casey Kotchman seems to have the inside track at designated hitter.

Wait a sec, Kotch has the inside track at DH? That's the first I've heard of it, which doesn't mean it's not true, but no one's really been discussing that. I suppose it is a possibility ... but I was under the impression that it would be either Morales or a DaVanon/Rivera platoon, with The Legs getting some time there after Kennedy returns. Spring Training will be quite interesting on this front ...

--Angels merchandise is assaulting LA, which is a great thing. Interesting:

Although the Angels have removed Anaheim from their uniforms and merchandise, spokesman Tim Mead said the agreement did not mean team items bearing the Los Angeles name would now appear.

"We have not authorized any Los Angeles merchandise," he said. "You just won't see that."

Wait, so there won't be any shirts that say "Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim"? Not one? That struck me as odd, but there it is. I guess everything will just say "Angels" from now on ... and I'm just fine with that.

That's funny, I thought Quinlan had the inside track on DH, given his outstanding year last year.
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