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About Jon
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1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
2) personally attacking other commenters
3) baiting other commenters
4) arguing for the sake of arguing
5) discussing politics
6) using hyperbole when something less will suffice
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9) typing "no-hitter" or "perfect game" to describe either in progress
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12) claiming your opinion isn't allowed when it's just being disagreed with

Angel Backlash
2006-01-12 23:23
by Jon Weisman
Note: The Dodger Thoughts blog has moved to the Los Angeles Times.

Since many in the media have decided that the Dodgers are back on the right track, it's apparently time for people to pick on the Angels.

As the offseason began, when the American League West champion Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim were shopping for players like Paul Konerko, I expected I might write about why the Angels weren't getting grief for messing with a champion, in contrast to the chiding the Dodgers got for the changes they made to their 2004 National League West champion squad.

Turns out, the Angels aren't changing much. But the interesting thing is that, people are rumbling that things have been too quiet. Steve Dileck of the Daily News is the latest:

Called the Angels - and this is absolutely true - somebody answered the phone. Honest to Gene Autry.

There are people there actually breathing. Capable of verbal communication. Presumably, capable of action.

Would never know it by the Angels' exciting offseason. Guess it's tough to make winter moves while hibernating.

Despite the fact that the Angels advanced one round further in the playoffs in 2005 than the Dodgers did in 2004 (not that he's making this comparison himself), Dilbeck offers a pessimistic assessment of the team.

When we last saw the Angels, they were getting schooled by the Chicago White Sox. Their lack of offense, lack of depth became striking.

And then the offseason came and they lost two starting pitchers, their starting catcher and their mostly starting center fielder. Fear not, they added some journeyman relievers and a backup third baseman.

Keep in mind that that "mostly starting center fielder" was Steve Finley.

Dilbeck allows Angels general manager Bill Stoneman to explain the Angels' decisions:

"What we determined at the end of the season was we'd go after an impact free agent, and there weren't really that many there," Stoneman said. "We did go after one guy and didn't get him.

"We decided at that point that rather than to get somebody that had a name that people knew but who wouldn't necessarily impact the club the way we wanted, that we had some very young talented players ... we wanted to give a full opportunity to win a spot and be productive here."

In other words, Stoneman argues that the Angels haven't been quiet - but that their major changes mostly involve the ongoing promotions of minor leaguers like Casey Kotchman and Jeff Mathis, with more waiting in the wings. Dilbeck doesn't buy it.

The Angels have one of the most highly regarded farm systems in baseball, but it's one thing to have outstanding potential and another to be a proven major-league star.

But there's still another thing. Between outstanding potential and proven major-league stardom, there is also overrated mediocrity. Buoyed by a farm system rated near or above that of the Dodgers, Stoneman is rejecting that third way.

Dilbeck tries to conclude on an optimistic note, but his unease is clear.

The Angels will certainly be competitive. They were last year when they advanced to the American League Championship Series.

But that only proved to reveal their shortcomings, left followers hungry for more.

There weren't too many sportswriters around town who looked at the post-2004 Dodgers in this light. The contrast is striking - and instructive. We don't know if the Angels will improve or decline in 2006, but just as the Dodgers weren't inherently wrong in following their division championship with a loud offseason a year ago, the Angels aren't inherently wrong in following their title with a so-called quiet offseason today. It's all about the nuances, the specific players involved. You need to look at things on a micro level: Is each move you make a good move? That's how you help a team. You don't help a team by standing pat for the sake of standing pat, nor by making moves for the sake of making moves.

Comments (255)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2006-01-12 23:30:16
1.   Bob Timmermann
Don't forget that productive offseason the Angels had after 2002. That 2003 Angels squad was a real powerhouse. All the way to 77-85.
2006-01-13 00:03:40
2.   fawnkyj
At the end of 2006 we will lose Kent, Nomar, Lofton, & possibly Drew. Some prospects will be ready to come up and contribute. Right now the Dodgers are getting positve media coverage, for the most part, but will all this positivity turn around next offseason when these young guys get promoted & we dont resign many FA's?
2006-01-13 00:17:38
3.   regfairfield
Signing Hector Carrasco suddenly counts as doing nothing?
2006-01-13 00:28:38
4.   overkill94
This is why newspaper columnists can never be trusted. If a successful team makes changes, they're ruining a "good thing". If this same team loses a couple players but doesn't make any big splashes, they're "sitting scared". Even if the team had successfully courted Konerko and maybe a starting pitcher, the journalists could come at them with the classic "not spending wisely" routine. This is why I do not read the newspaper anymore, it has become an industry of controversy rather than objective opinion.
2006-01-13 00:43:38
5.   GoBears
Well, "objective opinion" is an oxymoron, but I get your point. While I agree that newspapers, which are, after all, in the business of business, look for controversy or problems even when there aren't any, I think there's another theme as well -- their sportswriters are shallow and poorly informed. It's not that any team that wins and then makes changes is necessarily ruining a good thing. That depends on the changes. When the Dodgers let Beltre go after that monster season, well that was OBVIOUSLY letting the best player on the team walk, right? But compare that to how the ChiSox have been treated. They won it all, then traded their CF Rowand for Thome. But since Thome is a much bigger name, everyone said "they're not resting on their laurels, but still trying to improve the team." Same with the Vasquez deal. So the formula is: if you replace players with more famous players, you're improving. If you trade famous players who probably overperformed for unknowns or guys with upside, you're taking a huge risk.

This is consistent with how all deadline deals are traded, when a star goes to a contender for prospects. Often the team team getting the prospects is winning the deal, but you'll NEVER hear that from the media. Even in retrospect, the only examples anyone can think of are the Bagwell trade and the Smoltz trade.

So they probably ARE trying to stir the pot. But they're also just shortsighted (thinking only about next season, and only about what players have already done in the majors) and unwilling to do any research.

2006-01-13 00:44:51
6.   GoBears
But the most amazing thing is that there are sportswriters who still think that letting Finley walk (or trading him away) is somehow a bad thing.
2006-01-13 06:27:10
7.   the count
6 I hope they at least realized that letting Lima walk was a good thing.
2006-01-13 07:43:32
8.   Daniel Zappala
Part of this may also stem from the Angels always playing the role of the downtrodden step-sister. Despite their success last year, they can't really be all that good, so they need to make some splashy moves. The Dodger are always the favored son in LA, so if they achieve anything, you better not mess with a great franchise.
2006-01-13 07:50:31
9.   scareduck
Don't forget that productive offseason the Angels had after 2002.

Uh huh, and what were they supposed to do about

- losing Erstad to hamstring injuries, playing only 67 games that year
- losing playing time to Eckstein to various injuries
- losing Glaus to shoulder trouble incurred on the plastic turf in Minnesota
- losing righty-masher Brad Fullmer in June. In June!

The biggest charges that can be laid at the feet of Stoneman were

1) He failed to recognize weakness in him bench. Benjie Gil was useless in his second tour, having had a career year the previous year. Banjo-hitting outfielder Eric Owens was a liability most of the season, but a solid September masked that. Reserve C/1B/DH Shawn Wooten was done. All this while Orlando Palmiero, who was still a good fourth outfielder, was allowed to walk despite the team's bigger budget.
2) Scott Spiezio was re-signed. In context, you simply don't turn away a World Series hero, especially not when it's your team's only ring. But 2002 was his career year, and Stoneman at least recognized that fact by refusing to give him more than a year.

The 2003 squad didn't have to be the losing team it turned out to be, and certainly Stoneman could have done some things better. But it's hard to fault him for failing to make big moves that, at the beginning of the season, wouldn't have made much sense.

2006-01-13 07:52:28
10.   booyakasha
fyi, in lieu of your past post (few months back?) about strat-o-matic...

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/01/13/sports/13stratomatic.html?hp

2006-01-13 08:00:20
11.   Sam DC
Who knew Rob was running yet another blog:

http://www.joseguillensucks.com/

2006-01-13 08:14:57
12.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
9- Your post sounds like your sympathizing with the Angels in 2003. Please don't tell me your a closet Angels fan.

This is nothing in comparison to what our boys in blue went through last season.

2006-01-13 08:37:05
13.   molokai
We don't have to be closet Angel fans. I'm a proud supporter of both franchises. 2003 was as great a moment for me as 1988. I think the writer is way off base on his article. I take Jay Jaffe approach in a recent BP chat when asked the same question:
"I see the Angels as still the favorites in the West thanks to their pitching. Colon and Lackey are an excellent 1-2 punch. Ervin Santana and Kelvim Escobar should slot in to replace Washburn (whom I wouldn't have resigned for health reasons) and Byrd, and between Carrasco, Saunders, and Weaver, they'll patch through the #5. This team led the AL in Support Neutral Wins (SNLVAR) and Reliever Expected Wins Added (WXRL), and they should be able to handle the turnover. Finley is addition by subtraction, presuming that McPherson is healthy enough to handle third and Alfonzo can quietly continue decomposing. Kotchman ought to see more time. And I'm still guessing that they might sign Piazza to handle some DH and some catching."

When they start adding Wood/Kendrick and flip Aybar/Callapso for whatever help they need this team will continue to challenge for a title for the the rest of the decade.

2006-01-13 08:37:39
14.   Penarol1916
12. He runs 6-4-2, the Dodgers/Angels blog, he is a fan of both teams, while most of us are not, it isn't something that offends most people making comments here, especially since his blog is a really good source of Dodger information.
2006-01-13 08:38:54
15.   JJoeScott
What Dilbeck is overlooking: Dumping Finley, moving Erstad back to CF, entrenching Kotchman at 1B, having a healthy Escobar in the rotation, and letting Washburn walk all are huge upgrades.
2006-01-13 08:55:40
16.   scareduck
Who knew Rob was running yet another blog:

Apparently, not even Rob! :-)

2006-01-13 08:56:24
17.   Jon Weisman
12 - I think Rob is safely out of the closet when it comes to the Angels. As, for that matter, am I.

I can't say I really understand the idea behind Dodger fans hating the Angels. It's not exactly UCLA-USC.

2006-01-13 08:57:01
18.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
14- I strongly disagree. I believe most people here despise the Angels.

While I respect everyone's opinion, It's just hard for me to fathom being a Dodgers and Angels fan.

Maybe I'm just stubborn and old school.

I just hate people suddenly jumping on the Angels bandwagon following the 2002 season.

I guarantee you they weren't back when Brian Downing and Wally Joyner were playing. Most of these so called Angel fans probably never seen these guys play.

The boys in blue are the true team from Los Angeles. The Angels will always come in second in my book.

I bleed Dodger Blue and have for the past 20 years.

2006-01-13 09:06:08
19.   Jon Weisman
18 - So nobody liked the Angels before 2002? Who were those people cheering during the Wally World era, and whose felt the disappointment of the failures of 40 years?

The Angels come second in my book too - actually, they come third, behind my Dad's Cubs. But it's a long way from third to despising them. It has nothing to do with who the true team from Los Angeles is, and nothing to do with being old school. Being a Giant fan and a Dodger fan - that'd be unusual. But the Dodgers and Angels aren't rivals.

2006-01-13 09:07:58
20.   Curtis Lowe
I dont understand your hatred towards the Angels, they are AL the Dodgers are NL. It's not like anyone is saying they are Dogers/Giants fans then you would have a valid point otherwise hating the Angels is pretty much pointless unless your that territorial that you wont root for two teams from your city to succeed.
2006-01-13 09:10:10
21.   Matt Welch
If the Dodgers had taken Stoneman's 2005-06 approach in the 1990s, instead of trading potential for proven veterans & signing mediocre free agents to play positions better filled by their young talent, maybe they would have won a pennant or two, instead of squandering a historic amount of farm-system booty.

Keep in mind that Boston wants to trade Manny Ramirez, needs a SS & CF, and the Angels are particularly deep at those two positions.

And even if the Manny thing falls through, the Angels are still a very deep team, and one that will almost definitely see offensive improvements at 1B, DH, CF & 3B, while only losing punch on paper at C.

2006-01-13 09:11:29
22.   molokai
18
Dude I saw Frank Tanana pitch when he was going to be the best LHP in Los Angeles not named Sandy Koufax. Don't tell me where I come from, I've probably been a Dodger/Angel fan longer then your age. Maybe you've bled to much Dodger blood since your only joy was 1988 while the rest of us have had many more years of success so were not so bitter about the success of others.
2006-01-13 09:14:01
23.   Matt Welch
As for Angels-hating, I've seen a historic shift over my lifetime as an Angel fan -- before, it was us who reflexively hated y'all, based on the usual insecurity & jealousy. Now, I see very little Dodger-bashing among Halo fans, and tons of hostility coming from Chavez. Listen to the post-game radio shows, and you'll always hear at least one Dodger fan bellyaching about the Angels, and you'll never hear the vice-versa. It's pretty funny.
2006-01-13 09:15:34
24.   bluecrew22
I don't see them as rivals either, but I can't bring myself to be an Angel fan. It seems that they have always tried to steal publicity from the Dodgers- I guess calling themselves "the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim" is the ultimate example- and that is truly annoying! I also believe that Stoneman is the luckiest GM in baseball. What has he really done? Picked up Vlad, Colon and Escobar. Has he made any great trades? I guess there is something to be said for sitting back and not making changes at times. If the Dodgers has picked up Vlad like they should have things would have been dramatically different.
2006-01-13 09:16:17
25.   Daniel Zappala
I am as much a pure Angels-and-Dodgers fan as anyone. I grew up in OC, but as a kid listened to Vin Scully on my transistor radio hidden underneath my pillow. I was thrilled by the Dodgers in '78 and '81, disgusted by Reggie Jackson throwing his hip into the ball, and had the entire '81 team in my baseball card collection. Yet I also loved Grich, DeCinces, Brian Downing, and Rod Carew, and nearly died when they blew the games in '82 and '86. I used to get free tickets to see the Angels from my elementary school if I maintained an A average. I was of course thrilled when the Angels won it all in 2002, and was jumping around my dorm room in Stanford when Gibson hit his shot in '88. I listened to every game of Hershisher's scoreless inning streak on that same transistor radio, standing outside my dorm (again at Stanford) so I could pick up the signal from their Las Vegas affiliate at night. I even love Tommy Lasorda, being the good Italian boy that I am.

I bleed Dodger blue and Angel red, and always have.

2006-01-13 09:18:03
26.   Jon Weisman
23 - I've noticed that too, Matt. My hope remains that both teams will give us reason to be proud at the same time. I think that double-division-clinching Saturday in 2004 is one of the great days in my life as a sports fan.

But that's why I find the notion of hating the Angels so odd - because it's so recent. Before a few years ago, to most Dodger fans, the Angels were at worst like Cousin Oliver.

2006-01-13 09:19:10
27.   Jon Weisman
25 - What dorm did you live in in '88?
2006-01-13 09:24:22
28.   molokai
25
Dick Enberg was the 2nd best baseball announcer in town but he was also the 2nd best baseball announcer in the country and when he did the Rams he was the best football announcer. At least that is what my inner child tells me.

I think more of the so called Dodger lovers and Angel haters are < 30. Never to late to use a stereotype.

2006-01-13 09:29:21
29.   Daniel Zappala
I believe I was in Durand.
2006-01-13 09:32:37
30.   regfairfield
24 Stoneman's trade history that actually had some effect on a major league team:

Jim Edmonds for Adam Kennedy and Kent Bottenfield (bad start)
Seth Etherton for Wilmy Caracas
Kimera Bartee for Chone Figgins
Mo Vaughn for Kevin Appier
Brian Cooper for Brad Fullmer
Jorge Fabergas + 2 irrelevant PTBNL for Alex Ochoa and Sal Fasano
Scott Schonweis and Doug Nichol for Gary Glover, Scott Dunn, and Tim Bitner
Jose Guillen for Maicer Izturis and Juan Rivera
Dustin Mosley for Ramon Ortiz
Steve Finley for Edgardo Alfonzo

While Stoneman probably has a net loss in his trades (it's really hard to dig your way out of the Edmonds trade), he did make a couple of good trades (Appier, Fullmer, though Jeff DaVanon probably thinks differently about that one) that helped the Angels win the pennant.

2006-01-13 09:33:23
31.   regfairfield
That should be Ramon Ortiz for Dustin Mosley.
2006-01-13 09:33:32
32.   Daniel Zappala
27 I had a history of really poor numbers in the Draw.
2006-01-13 09:33:42
33.   JJoeScott
26 - It's more Raider-cum-Dodger fan mentality. I've stopped going to Dodgers-Angels games at Anaheim because of the Dodger-jersey wearing hoodlums looking to instigate fights.

Same reason USC stopped selling beer at games ...

2006-01-13 09:36:09
34.   GoBears
Add me as another Dodger fan for 30+ years who also roots for the Angels. Now that they play every year in games that count, I always root for the Dodgers, and I would in a Freeway World Series too. But I'd be rooting for the Angels to make it that far. I had no trouble rooting for them in 2002, especially since they had to go through the Yankees and Giants to win it. That was icing.

I think you might be wrong, SSSJ, that most people here despise the Angels. For most of my baseball fandom, if I cared at all about them, it was affection for the team that couldn't shoot straight, or catch a break. Now I'm impressed, especially since they've built up their farm system.

And I couldn't care less if they re-adopt the name Los Angeles Angels. It offends me more as a linguist than as a baseball fan.

I go to a few Angels games every year (despite living in West LA). I have a good friend who has been an Angels fan as long as they've existed - had season tix as a kid - and I can tell you that among the bandwaggoners in 2002 were a LOT of life-long fans whose joy after 40 years in the wilderness was nice to see. Heck, my friend is so happy that he's even willing to forgive the team for keeping Erstad around despite his putrid suckitude.

2006-01-13 09:36:10
35.   molokai
Enough there to like if you take out his 1st trade. Looks like he was so burned on the 1st deal that he hasn't made a deal of a frontline player since, other then the forced Guillen deal.
2006-01-13 09:36:42
36.   JJoeScott
25 - We've shared similar experiences. Only my dorm moment (USC) was a bad one - Donnie Moore gave up the Dave Henderson home run.

I do recall running around my junior high school quad jumping up and down when Monday homered in '81.

2006-01-13 09:37:07
37.   Matt Welch
Stoneman also:

* Signed Mike Scioscia, and with him helped change the culture of the organization (to one directly resembling the pre-1990 Dodgers).
* Selected David Eckstein and Ben Weber off waivers.
* Plucked Brendan Donnelly from obscurity.
* Signed Paul Byrd to a very effective one-year contract.
* Refused to overpay for the declines of Scott Spiezio, Troy Percival and Bengie Molina, at minimum. (We'll see w/ Washburn & Glaus.)
* Refused to trade away a single Grade-A prospect (although he let Jenks & Turnbow walk), while doing a pretty good job of making room for young talent on the big-league roster.

He's far from perfect, but he definitely deserves some credit for the organization's success.

2006-01-13 09:38:50
38.   Penarol1916
28. I'm under 30 and used to be an Angel fan back in the days of Joyner, DeCinces, Witt, and Downing, I did it primarily to be different from my dad and brothers, once those teams of the mid-80's started to break up, for some reason I just lost interest in them, I think they were more of a phase than an actual rooting interest. I'll always have a bit of a soft spot for them, but that's only when I think of them, which isn't very often at all.
2006-01-13 09:40:26
39.   GoBears
30 While the Edmonds trade certainly looks bad in retrospect, as I recall, Stoneman's hand was sort of forced. He tried to trade Erstad or Anderson first, but understandably got no takers. Salmond was still ambulatory at the time, so someone had to go. Edmonds was also injured that year (I think), and was a bit of a malcontent. The team needed a 2nd baseman and a starting pitcher, and Kennedy was a hot prospect. At the time, it seemed a bit like the Milton Bradley trade - Stoneman got some value in a bad situation.
2006-01-13 09:41:10
40.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
24-Thank You. To me baseball is the greatest game in the world. To root for two teams from the same general vicinity undermines my support of one of the teams. That is why I choose to dislike the Angels.

When I think of Los Angeles baseball, the Dodgers are the only team in my mind.

Go Dodgers!

2006-01-13 09:42:15
41.   lafdofanaheim
McCort and Moreno each deal with issues as they see fit. Are the Dodgers going to win it all in 2006...perhaps but not likely. They're probably 20-1. The Angels are probably 100-1.
Moreno cut his payroll significantly as did many other mlb teams. Moreno is battling the City of Anaheim over the name change. The city loses revenue if the ticket sales decline...which they will most likely.
How can one argue with the success of Lackey and Figgins who made under $500,000 each in 2005? Why re-sign Bengie who clogs the base paths or Washburn who must have a personality disorder as he seems to lose games that he should win? And Byrd is probably on his way downhill. Black would not have let him go.
To sum up, Moreno seems to be vindictive. If the law suit goes the way of the LAA of Anaheim (after all Moreno did not technically break the lease), then I suspect we will see wholesale changes to a more Latino based team. Mediocrity like Erstad, Kennedy, Anderson and the like will be upgraded by prospects we see in the upcoming World games. I know that I will not be buying my LAA season tickets this year!
2006-01-13 09:42:30
42.   regfairfield
37 Stoneman seems to have had a very good 2001 and 2002 which lead to the pennant, but his sucesses since then seem to stem from having a huge budget.

When was the last time a young player was given a chance before a starter was injured? When I think of the Angels right now, I see some really good players (DaVanon, Quinlan) who just weren't given a chance. Things might change with the current crop of youngsters (and Erstad's move to center is a positive change) but it will be interesting to see how long it takes Kendrick and Wood to find jobs.

2006-01-13 09:44:09
43.   bluecrew22
Ok, Stoneman has made a couple of minor trades that have helped somewhat. As you said reg, he has a net loss thanks to the Edmonds trade. For better or worse, he is probably the most inactive GM I've seen. Maybe the Edmonds trade paralyzed him. The Angels desperately need another bat, that was very obvious last year.
Another point on being a Dodger and Angel fan- Daniel mentioned watching Reggie throw his hip into the ball. I hated Reggie since that moment and could never be an Angel fan with him on the team.
2006-01-13 09:44:53
44.   regfairfield
39 Why would he get no takers for Erstad or Anderson?

Wasn't this the year that Erstad went crazy and Anderson started his string of being called the most underrated player in baseball? Or am I a year ahead?

2006-01-13 09:46:29
45.   Matt Welch
When was the last time a young player was given a chance before a starter was injured?

Last year, when Glaus walked and MacPherson was given the starting job. Also this year, when Molina walks & Mathis is given the job; and Erstad's moved to CF to give Kotchman the job. Also see: John Lackey, Francisco Rodriguez, Scot Shields, and on and on.

DaVanon was given the exact chance he deserved -- to be a fourth outfielder during his late 20s & early 30s.

2006-01-13 09:46:41
46.   Jon Weisman
32 - I can't even think of where Durand is. Sterling Quad?

I drew 2,513 in the draw out of 3,000 for my sophomore year - that number is burned in my brain. But senior year ('88-'89) I ended up in the Suites, which was just fine.

2006-01-13 09:47:27
47.   regfairfield
43 That's a little unfair. He got Figgins for absolutely nothing, found someone stupid enough (granted, it was the Mets) to take Mo Vaughn and he got a useful player in exchange.

Those were both amazingly good trades. Of course, it seems like all of his trades involve one team getting at least a decent player, and the other team getting nothing.

2006-01-13 09:48:21
48.   Marty
I basically ignored the Angels from 1964 through 2000. I always thought them a boring team. Plus I've never liked the American League. However, since they got good this century, I actually pay attention sometimes and do root for them in the playoffs. I usually root for the national league team in the series, but it was fun to watch Anaheim crush the Giant's hopes.

But my goodness, Rex Hudler is enought to make you hate the team.

2006-01-13 09:49:19
49.   regfairfield
45 DaVanon was constantly putting up .950-1.050 OPS in the minors, he deserved far more than being a 4th outfielder in his prime.

I do conceed the not giving young players a chance, point, however.

2006-01-13 09:50:19
50.   Eric L
43 Stoneman also gets "credit" for the Finley deal.
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2006-01-13 09:50:43
51.   Jon Weisman
48 - I gathered at the time that I was in the minority on this, but I thought Jerry Reuss did a nice job as a color man on the Angels broadcasts years back.
2006-01-13 09:53:18
52.   Daniel Zappala
43 Amazingly, I was OK with Reggie being an Angel. Perhaps it was because he was just that good of a player. Perhaps my inner Angel won over my inner Dodger. I also hated Brett Butler when he was a Giant, but loved him as a Dodger. And now we have Jeff Kent. You're on my team, you're OK with me. [Exceptions made for Gary Sheffield.]
2006-01-13 09:54:46
53.   GoBears
I'm with Matt Welch on this question. DaVanon was nothing special (albeit a better hitter than Erstad, but who isn't?). While the Erstad fixation has probably cost Kotchman a year or two, that's the only example I can think of where the team blocked a prospect with a mediocrity. Maybe Orlando Cabrera from here on out...

I thought it was far-sighted of Stoneman to let Glaus go in favor of MacPherson. Not something most teams would have done, especially teams with money.

2006-01-13 09:57:07
54.   Marty
51. I don't remember Reuss at all, but I didn't listen (or pay attention to while it was on) to many angel broadcasts. Someone mentioned Enberg earlier. He was really good, probably the best all-sports announcer around.
2006-01-13 09:57:39
55.   Daniel Zappala
46 634 Mayfield Dr. Only 36 residents. Very quiet. My draw numbers were probably not that bad, but bad enough that I don't even remember them.

http://assu.stanford.edu/draw/display.php?Durand

The plus side was that we had relatively good cooking.

2006-01-13 09:59:31
56.   Jesse
i believe for myself, my distaste for the angels came with the blind praise the past few years by the press, when the angels' moves and the dodgers were quite similar (not resigning home grown power 3b men, losing their heart and soul in david e and percy, their poor 2003, etc).
2006-01-13 09:59:35
57.   Jesse
i believe for myself, my distaste for the angels came with the blind praise the past few years by the press, when the angels' moves and the dodgers were quite similar (not resigning home grown power 3b men, losing their heart and soul in david e and percy, their poor 2003, etc).
2006-01-13 09:59:40
58.   Daniel Zappala
I was not a fan of letting Glaus go. I would have preferred to keep him, and then move him to DH eventually. He would be the big bat they need this year, and I wish they had gotten him from Arizona instead of Toronto.
2006-01-13 10:00:58
59.   Daniel Zappala
Perhaps most of us can't remember Angel broadcasters because we were busy listening to Vin Scully with our hidden earphones while at school and supposedly sleeping.
2006-01-13 10:01:34
60.   overkill94
GoBears, what part of West LA are you in? I'm over on Wilshire and Westgate.

I think the only thing truly stopping me from having secondary loyalties is how obnoxious my Angels-loving friends are. They're all very snooty about everything since the team got good, but never said much pre-2002. Oh yeah, and Hudler's more annoying than Steve Lyons could dream of being. Having all their games on TV gives me some interest in them, but I mostly just express indifference to their W-L record.

2006-01-13 10:02:30
61.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
34- I'm confused- Now that they play every year in games that count, I always root for the Dodgers, and I would in a Freeway World Series too.

What does this mean.

2006-01-13 10:03:54
62.   gvette
As a longtime Dodger fan, I can also say that I would never trade the experience of going to Anaheim and seeing;

1)Nolan Ryan dueling Luis Tiant;

2)Goose Gossage for the Yankees firing 100+ mph fastballs against hitters like Carew and Baylor;

3)Vlad swinging at pitches at his shoetops and sending them over those stupid fake rocks in center field;

Enberg and Don Drysdale were great to listen to, especially considering that except for Ryan and Tanana, the rest of the 70's Angels were pretty lackluster(Dave Chalk? Rudy Meoli?)

Angel fans (and players like Baylor) always resented the Dodgers, I can't see any reason that Dodger fans should feel that way about the Halos.

2006-01-13 10:05:09
63.   JJoeScott
41 - Wha'? The Angels are 100-1? They're at least co-favorites to win the AL West, and they still have the division's best pitching staff, 1 thru 11.
2006-01-13 10:06:07
64.   Jon Weisman
Yes, it was wonderful having Enberg - he was doing the Angels, Rams and UCLA at one point, wasn't he?
2006-01-13 10:06:44
65.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
60-Thank You.
2006-01-13 10:14:04
66.   GoBears
But my goodness, Rex Hudler is enought to make you hate the team.

Unless Vinny is doing the game, I always watch baseball with the sound off.

2006-01-13 10:16:49
67.   regfairfield
Really, have you seen DaVanon's minor league stats? They're amazing.

He was a bit of a late bloomer, but once he hit 24, the lowest he slugged at any level was .566, and once his on base percentage stats started to be revealed the lowest OBP he put up was .400. His isolated power was always above .200, and his isolated patience was in the .090s. The man unfairly lost his chance to be great by languishing in the minors and on the bench in his prime.

2006-01-13 10:18:18
68.   gvette
64--Enberg was the main sports announcer for Autry's radio/TV empire (Ch. 5/KMPC)on everything but UCLA football (think that was handled by Fred Hessler).

Enberg did the Rams, Angels and Wooden era UCLA basketball until he went network in the mid/late 70's.

2006-01-13 10:18:30
69.   bluecrew22
I completely agree with Marty. I can't listen to Angel games because of the pretentious homer Rex. The Angels can do no wrong and the other team gets no credit from him. It makes me appreciate Scully that much more. I guess Dodger fans have been spoiled through the years. I did enjoy listening to Torre when he was on the Angels broadcasts.
2006-01-13 10:19:09
70.   Bob Timmermann
The sports book I just checked online has the Yankees as the betting favorite to win the World Series at 3-1. St. Louis is 2nd at 9-2. The Angels are 9-1. The Dodgers are 30-1.

Detroit is 100-1. Tampa Bay, Kansas City and Colorado are 200-1.

These odds are just the sentiments of the bettors though.

2006-01-13 10:24:29
71.   regfairfield
70 I'd take the Indians and A's at 14 to 1.
2006-01-13 10:32:13
72.   GoBears
61 What I mean is, until interleague play, I had no conflict at all rooting for both teams. Now that there IS interleague play, I have to choose in those games which team to root for, and I've found that I always choose the Dodgers. So the Angels are clearly #2, not co-#1.

Sorry for being unclear.

2006-01-13 10:37:17
73.   Bob Timmermann
The Angels and Dodgers are similar to my conflict when UCLA and UC Berkeley play each other. I put in four years in Westwood and one year in the Glorious Workers Paradise. My rule is that I root for the school that's having a better season. If both are, then I go for UCLA. If I'm at a game in person, I root for the home team.

As for the Dodgers and Angels, I try to root strategically during interleague play. I try to see who will be hurt the least by a loss and root for the other team.

2006-01-13 10:40:15
74.   Matt Welch
The man unfairly lost his chance to be great by languishing in the minors and on the bench in his prime.

Maybe. But after nearly 1,000 major league ABs, mostly bunched during the near-prime years of 29-31, he's gone for .256/.348/.401, and a bunch of what little punch was there came from hitting in Puerto Rico for a week.

This is hardly scientific, but I always had the impression that he had a AAAA swing -- really long and looping, not particularly well suited to 95-mph fastballs or 88 mph splitters. But then, when I first saw Eckstein take batting practice, I thought there was no way he'd ever play a big-league game.

2006-01-13 10:42:44
75.   GoBears
73 when UCLA and UC Berkeley play each other...

Geez, Bob. You reveal your preference with your prose. You're a Ucla fan. "UC Berkeley" is the name of an educational institution. For sports, they're (we're) CAL, or, if you must, California. Heck, even the Snodfart folks know that - they're athletic dep't phone number is 1-800-Beat-CAL. I know you know it too. Just wanted to let you know that you're not nearly as conflicted as you think you are.

Drives me nuts when announcers refer to the "Berkeley Bears." Blecchh....

2006-01-13 10:44:29
76.   Bob Timmermann
I don't like to use "Cal" or "California" to describe UC Berkeley.

The University of California is in Oakland.

2006-01-13 10:47:26
77.   GoBears
74 I think that's what makes Eckstein such a fan favorite. He looks like he has no business out there. But he manages to stay with the big boys, even out-do a lot of them (you know, like the guy who replaced him).
2006-01-13 10:53:21
78.   Matt Welch
77 -- Yeah, I love Eck for that, and especially for his defensive footwork, which has to be absolutely perfect to make up for the rag arm. But I fear that his offense is due for a big decline, now that NL pitchers have presumably figured out his main tricks (taking the first pitch no matter what, and leaning into pitches). Hopefully he'll prove me wrong again.
2006-01-13 10:53:44
79.   GoBears
76 Spoken like a true bureaucrat. Oakland. Sheesh.

I'm just saying that CAL fans say CAL. You don't, which reveals you to be a Ucla fan. Nothing wrong with that. Just trying to clear up the cognitive dissonance for ya. Happy to help.

2006-01-13 10:53:57
80.   Penarol1916
69. I've never heard Hudler broadcast a game. Would you say that he is a worse homer than Hawk Harrelson? I'm not even sure I'll be able to watch a single White Sox game with him in the booth next year after they've won the championship.
2006-01-13 10:54:27
81.   Daniel Zappala
Google is the ruler of all. "UCB" and "UC Berkeley" turn up www.berkeley.edu as the first hit. "cal" gets you to Berkeley on the third hit, but first is the stock symbol for Continental Airlines. There is no www.cal.edu.

But yeah, when it comes to sports I call them "Cal". I have grudging respect for their football program these days, since Jeff Tedford is running it, and love their CS program, but otherwise don't feel anything special either way. They turned me down for admission but when our HS counselor called them to figure out why, they sent me a letter offering me admission and claiming they "made a mistake". So I went to Stanford.

2006-01-13 10:59:03
82.   blue22
80 - They're both similar in degrees of homerism. It's their style that's different - Hawk seems like he's broadcasting from a bar in Chicago, whereas Rex has much more summercamp counselor in him.
2006-01-13 11:03:12
83.   Ben P
I grew up rooting for both teams and never saw them as rivals. The two radio stations I listened to most growing up were 790 for the Dodgers and 710 for the Angels. The Dodgers always came first for me, but as a baseball fan I was just excited that there were 162 home games I might go to in the area instead of 81, and that on any given night there were two gamed on TV and radio instead of one. The L.A. Angels thing is annoying, but I can blame Moreno for that without blaming the entire team.
2006-01-13 11:05:21
84.   bigcpa
Great observations up top Jon. The 2005 Angels were quite the case study. The local press bought into the Finley and Cabrera signings and thought the Angels were built to win it all. Even as their offense (minus Glaus/Guillen) crept along at 11th in the AL or so, you'd rarely read they were a flawed team. 1st place seems to have that placating effect. Who wants to write that Erstad, GA, Finley and OC can't hit when they're making a playoff run? It took 5 ALCS games for people like Dilbeck to see what was in plain view all year.

And of course there wasn't much media attention to nuance when breaking down the 71 win Dodgers.

2006-01-13 11:07:08
85.   Linkmeister
Back when I was becoming a baseball fan in LA, the Dodgers had just arrived (1959 was my first year in the city) and the Angels were two years away from existence. I, being an impressionable 11-year-old in 1961, was quite happy to see at least one game at the old Wrigley Field (Steve Bilko! Leon Wagner! Albie Pearson! And don't hold me to actual dates of when those players actually played for the Angels).

For me, Jon's got it right. They were the poorer cousins. Not quite Ross Perot's "crazy aunt in the attic," but maybe like Huck to the Dodgers' Tom Sawyer.

2006-01-13 11:09:12
86.   Ben P
Re #79, I went to Cal, but I only say "Cal" when I'm talking to fellow Californians or fellow sports fans. My experience since living in D.C. is that many people who aren't into sports don't know what "Cal" is. They only know Berkeley.
2006-01-13 11:12:14
87.   gvette
Hud IS a homer, which is not the accepted LA style of sports broadcasting (with the exception of Ralph "Bingo" Lawler).

But you can't stay too annoyed at him, considering that 1)he is a genuinely enthusiastic guy despite years in the minors,2)has a developmentally disabled child, and 3)apparently used to love his weed.

2006-01-13 11:20:19
88.   GoBears
86 That's their problem.

It's as much town-and-gown differences as it is sports-and-academics. The city is Berkeley. The city and the university campus are very different worlds. When I was there (late 80s - same age as Jon), the right-most member of the Berkeley City Council was a lefty Democrat. They mayor spent half his term hanging out with Daniel Ortega in Managua. Meanwhile, the biggest student groups on campus were the Young Republicans and the Asian Business Association (i.e., young Asian Republicans). Contrariwise, when more activist students protested apartheid and UC investment in South Africa, the City cheered them on, and refused to allow Berkeley police to intervene when the protests got rambunctious, while UC police were busting heads with billy clubs (I do not exaggerate).

I'm not making judgments here - just explaining why "Berkeley" seems a very different thing from "Cal." Now, watching and rooting for Cal sports, I even forget that Berkeley is where they play.

The only thing more incongruous than a student wearing a "BERKELEY" sweatshirt to a game is when the sweatshirt is red. Not a smart thing to do if you value your wardrobe.

2006-01-13 11:22:40
89.   regfairfield
Hud is probably as much of a homer as Hawk (read: 100%) but the difference is that while Hudler just sounds like a guy who's enthuastic about the game, Hawk is the guy sitting next to you in the Giants cap after he's drank 65 dollars worth of beer and is challenging the people around his to huck peanut shells at his head.

I don't like Hudler, but comparing him to Harrelson is an insult.

2006-01-13 11:26:10
90.   GoBears
87 I agree with that assessment of Hudler. But to his credit, while he is clearly rooting for the home team, I wouldn't put him in the same category as Harrelson, or the Cubs guys, or (the worst of all time) the infamous Johnny Most when he did Celtic games - he doesn't too often willfully misrepresent the facts in order to support the home team. According to Most, no Celtic ever committed a foul, and every missed shot or turnover was clearly the result of an uncalled foul by the other team. Hud roots, but he'll admit when the Angels got the benefit of a missed call, and so on.

To me, the "we" stuff isn't the annoying thing about Hudler. It's the "small ball is better," "productive outs are purposeful," junk. I like blue's "camp counselor" analogy. It just seems weird when discussing a bunch of overpaid adult athletes.

2006-01-13 11:27:09
91.   blue22
89 - And at least Hud played for the Angels. I was shocked to see that Hawk never once donned a ChiSox uni during his playing days. And he was born in South Carolina, so his homerism is purely a product of the name on his paycheck.
2006-01-13 11:27:13
92.   Bob Timmermann
Really, I just refuse to use "Cal" here to be contrary.

I will go back to referring to my undergraduate school as "The Southern Branch".

2006-01-13 11:28:09
93.   Sam DC
79 All I know is that it's UCLA, not Ucla. Sheesh.

86 My wife went to Cal/UCB and regularly gets blank stares when she announces that she went to Cal.

And, while I realize it is very small of the Bruin in me, has anyone else laughed at the USC Cheerleader photo linked at LA Observed?

2006-01-13 11:29:27
94.   Bob Timmermann
Because the White Sox won the World Series, Harrelson will get to have that associated with him forever now. The only way he's leaving his job is if he is found in bed with a live Jerry Reinsdorf or a dead Kenny Williams.
2006-01-13 11:31:45
95.   blue22
92 - Why does "Cal" get to be "Cal". I'm a product of the UC system (go Gauchos!). Why do they get to use the generic monicker - were they the first one?
2006-01-13 11:32:12
96.   Nigel
75

As a Cal fan/grad, I always refer to the Stanfurd phone number as 1-800 BE AT CAL.

2006-01-13 11:33:37
97.   Bob Timmermann
If this were the New York Times, it would be U.C.L.A. As well as U.S.C. The school in Berkeley is California.

However, it's SUNY and CCNY and NYU.

2006-01-13 11:34:39
98.   Ben P
Re 89: Not to let this devolve into a completely Cal-centered discussion, but people often cite the fact that the Young Republicans are the largest organization on campus as evidence that somehow the school isn't as liberal as the stereotype suggests.

But the truth is actually the opposite: The reason why the Young GOP is the largest -- or one of the largest -- group on campus is that the liberals are divided into about 1,000 different groups while the conservatives only have a few. Of course the school is huge and diverse, but it's still overwhelmingly liberal and the city's leftish politics reflect those of the student body pretty well.

2006-01-13 11:34:46
99.   Bob Timmermann
UC Berkeley - opened in 1866
UCLA - opened in 1929
2006-01-13 11:34:51
100.   FirstMohican
Re: "But that's why I find the notion of hating the Angels so odd - because it's so recent. Before a few years ago, to most Dodger fans, the Angels were at worst like Cousin Oliver."

I think the Angel "hate" stemmed from them - until recently apparently - being a media darling, adding the LA name, and having an increase in fans post 02. Of course there are some Dodger fans that will "hate" the Angels because they're not the Dodgers - the same ones who throw nachos at you for wearing an SF hat.

If the Angels A) contributed to LA the way the Dodgers do, and B) taped Rex Hudler's mouth and eyebrows static, I would probably be a fan. Currently though, I just view them as a business rival to the Dodgers, and don't necessarily "hate" them.

Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2006-01-13 11:37:08
101.   Ben P
Sorry, my last comment was referring to 88, not 89. And I still don't know how to do links.
2006-01-13 11:37:38
102.   Marty
I'm a big SC fan and I thought that photo was hilarious.
2006-01-13 11:40:17
103.   Bob Timmermann
The photo doesn't have context and it could very well be that the cheerleader thought that something else happened (like USC making a stop). Or else the young woman is so used to raising her arms in a cheer that she just did so reflexively.
2006-01-13 11:44:06
104.   Sam DC
103 Oh sure, Bob. Here I am admitting my small and pettiness, and you go and be all fair and reasonable about the thing. For the second time today, I say sheesh.
2006-01-13 11:46:22
105.   GoBears
98 Not to let this devolve into a completely Cal-centered discussion...

Hee hee. This is what I've been implicitly threatening Jon with since I first signed on this site well over a year ago.

That's a fair point about the difference between numbers and organization. But, well, organization matters. Just read Mancur Olson on the unimportance of numbers without it. But I was also referring specifically to the time that I was there. Since the 80s, I think the students have moved leftward a bit, and the city has become much more moderate. Telegraph Avenue and Shattuck, etc., are positively gentrified compared to 15-20 yrs ago. There are (gasp!) chain stores now. When I was there, the most organized, vocal students were something akin to the Reagan Youth. There were some serious lefties, but most students were, like me, basically moderate and not willing to devote any energy at all to politics. When leftish protests happened, a large share of the participants were not students at all, but former students (60s and 70s leftovers) who remained in Berkeley. I always thought it was funny (as in ironic) that when there'd be protest/riots from People's Park to campus, kids from the dorms would join in just to loot The Gap for free sweaters. That's stickin' it to the man!

2006-01-13 11:51:00
106.   Bob Timmermann
I'm only small and petty when it comes to Frank Robinson.
2006-01-13 12:13:05
107.   J Rebel
I'm True Blue, but my first baseball game with Dad was an Angel game...a closer drive than Dodger Stadium at the time.

Otherwise my handful of games in Anaheim were memorable: Nolan Ryan's last appearance at Angel Stadium before retirement. Had upper deck seats in the sold out game. I wish I could access that game archive somewhere. The other memory was more recent...Vlad's 5/5 game versus the BoSox.

2006-01-13 12:17:06
108.   Daniel Zappala
Was at Nolan Ryan's last game too, but had better seats. Last attended Joe Saunder's debut against the Blue Jays last year (4-3 loss), but that's pretty good considering it's a 9 - 10 hour drive to the stadium.
2006-01-13 12:22:01
109.   Penarol1916
105. Ooh, Mancur Olson, probably my favorite guy to read while in college, D4P and I had some discussions about him on the ESPN board. Did you ever take a class from Oliver Williamson while at Berkeley?
2006-01-13 12:29:23
110.   Bob Timmermann
The first baseball game I attended was an Angels. Alex Johnson Bat Night in 1971.
2006-01-13 12:45:53
111.   LAT
Sorry, in advance but I have to post a proud father moment. My 11 year old daughter had an interveiw for admission to a middle school. Turns out the admissions director (a woman) is from Boston and a huge Red Sox fan. Rather, than the usual questions about school, my daughter asks her how she feels about the Damon trade and they were off to the races. Apparently, they spent 15 of the 20 minutes talking about Damon, Manny, Trot Nixon, Little and Nomar. Who knows if she'll get in, but I don't expect to many applicants to a girls school in West LA were talking Red Sox baseball.

And yes, by the time it was over the Director of Admissions knew a lot more about Shawn Green than she had before.

2006-01-13 13:02:40
112.   Bob Timmermann
111

I'm glad your daughter's interview went well. In my day, we had junior highs, and we liked it! And they just took us in anyway.

Technically, I never attended junior high as I went to Catholic school from grades 1-8 and those are all considered "elementary" and then you go to high school.

2006-01-13 13:04:16
113.   scareduck
37 -- Matt, I think it's also fair to say that Stoneman also gave Spiezio a one-year contract he almost certainly wouldn't have earned other than with his good year followed by hitting the single most important home run in franchise history. Of the players you mention, Glaus is probably the one that hurts most, but the fact that the Snakes were so eager to move him gives credence to the stories percolating out of Anaheim that he wasn't big on conditioning. And judging by the reaction at U.S.S. Mariner, the decision to let Washburn walk was an entirely sound one.

48 - I try to ignore Hudler. He's terrible only if you expect Vin Scully, but compare him, say, to the horrible announcers the White Sox have, or those of the Pirates. But he is sufficiently bad that you'd think there would be some kind of drinking game involving him, perhaps something taking a swig each time he says Steve Finley (or whichever slumping player) "is due".

84 - you'd only read that the Angels had no flaws if you weren't reading the Halosphere at the time. Trust me, plenty of us were tearing our hair out.

107 - wow, I wish I had been there for that one. Vladi picked up 9 RBIs, a career high, and if I'm not mistaken, a team record. My first game was also an Angels game, though I don't remember it; I was first and foremost a Dodgers fan in those days.

111 - that is priceless!

2006-01-13 13:07:21
114.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
The Angels trial started today: ESPN home page:
SANTA ANA, Calif. -- Angels owner Arte Moreno violated a 10-year-old contract with Anaheim and the city lost $100 million in tourism revenue and publicity when he changed the team's name last year, a city attorney said Friday.

Way to go Arte. Way to bog down the city of Anaheim. Way to put your own agenda first.

I hope they rule in favor of the city of Anaheim. Anaheim Angels, and that's it.
Quit trying to move in on the Dodgers market.

Go Dodgers!

2006-01-13 13:19:54
115.   Xeifrank
FYI, a decent write up about the top Dodger prospects. vr, Xei

http://tinyurl.com/ct433

2006-01-13 13:29:00
116.   Jon Weisman
111 - The only specific detail I can remember about my interview to get into seventh grade at Harvard School was that I talked about Mork & Mindy. Oh, and that I felt very small sitting in a big chair.
2006-01-13 13:33:29
117.   D4P
OT: Arrested Development

Don't know if any of you saw this, but

Fox has announced a Friday, Feb. 10, two-hour season finale — that's what the memo says, season finale — for Arrested Development. In the season finale — that's what the memo says, season finale — Fast Times at Ridgemont High's Judge Reinhold will guest-star, as well as Arrested headliner Jason Bateman's real-life sis, Family Ties alum Justine Bateman, playing a woman who may or may not be Michael's half-sister.

http://www.tvguide.com/News/Entertainment/

2006-01-13 13:35:41
118.   Ben P
So first I find out that Jon went to my rival college -- Cal vs. Stanford -- and now I find out he went to my rival high school -- Harvard vs. Brentwood. And yet we both root for the Dodgers. Dogs and cats, living together...
2006-01-13 13:51:24
119.   Blue Thrue and Thrue
87 Hud IS a homer, which is not the accepted LA style of sports broadcasting...

Chick Hearn was a huge homer. And it never kept me from rooting for the Lakers (although it bothered me fairly often).

Put me down as a non-Hudler hater. Homerism seems to be the trend for announcers these days, with the Dodgers being a notable exception. And I think Hud's enthusiasm is genuine, which makes him a little more tolerable.

Also put me down as a dual rooter. I have rooted for the Dodgers and Angels, in that order, since childhood. As a baseball fan, I can't ignore a local team with the likes of Nolan Ryan on it, and it never mattered before interleague play.

2006-01-13 13:55:12
120.   Eric L
Chick Hearn was a huge homer. And it never kept me from rooting for the Lakers (although it bothered me fairly often).

I wouldn't call Chick a homer. He was more like a fan. When the team stunk, Chick sure let everyone listening know about it.

In my opinion, a homer is a guy like Hud. When the team isn't playing well, the homer won't acknowledge it.

2006-01-13 13:56:16
121.   blue22
119 - Chick Hearn was a huge homer?

I thought of him more as "colorful" or "enthusiastic". The team they have now (Joel Meyers and Stu, along with Sunderland last year) is more homerisitc (?) than I remember Chick being.

2006-01-13 13:59:46
122.   Blue Thrue and Thrue
120 We have different definitions of homer, I guess. To me, if it even sounds like an announcer is rooting for someone, he's a homer. Vin prides himself on not giving any clue about which team he works for, and that's part of what makes him the best. But you knew who Chick was pushing for in about a minute.

I've committed blasphemy now, criticizing Chick. Let the stoning begin!

2006-01-13 14:03:44
123.   Blue Thrue and Thrue
I should add, though, that I find homerism pretty forgivable. Anyone who says he can follow a team around for years at a time and not develop an attachment is, I think, kidding himself. And kidding his viewers. All the more reason to respect Vin for keeping that largely undetectable.
2006-01-13 14:04:16
124.   Bob Timmermann
Harvard-Westlake's big rival is Brentwood? Is that an intellectual rivalry or a sports rivalry? In sports, those two schools compete in different divisions as Harvard-Westlake is much bigger. And tends to recruit really big kids to play basketball.

I always thought Brentwood's chief rival in football was Campbell Hall. And maybe Crossroads in basketball.

2006-01-13 14:04:50
125.   Blaine
I've enjoyed the Angel-Dodger fan talk. Count me in as being indifferent towards the Angels through 80's-90's and irritated towards what seemed to be fans coming out of the woodwork in 2002 and on. My irritation is only towards the bandwagon fans and I still would root for the Angels to win. I would love to see the Dodgers win the freeway world series.
2006-01-13 14:06:39
126.   Blue Thrue and Thrue
An example comes to mind: During the Nixon (Norm, that is) years, an opponent had a breakaway at the end of a game that would have won the game, with Nixon the only guy back on D. So Chick bellowed out: "Get a flyswatter, Norman!"

Can you even imagine Vin doing that?

2006-01-13 14:06:42
127.   Robert Fiore
This is going to be great. We'll be able to cheer Reggie Bush after Frank McCourt brings the Texans to the new football stadium he's building in Chavez Ravine.

Wooo, have I been smoking a lot of crack.

2006-01-13 14:09:12
128.   Eric L
122 You have a point. When I think of homers, its more like the Hawk Harrleson's and Hud's of the world that stick out. Local NFL radio guys also come to mind. Chick might have been a homer, but it was very tame in comparison to out and out homers.

On that note, Vin is just so good at what he does. I don't think there are or have been many guys with the professionalism that Vin has shown during his career. As good as Chick was, he still isn't Vin.

Chick said it best (paraphrased) "Vin is like fine wine and cheese. I'm the beer and peanuts guy".

2006-01-13 14:09:46
129.   molokai
111
Didn't know Damon had been traded:)

I can understand how Hud may annoy fans used to Vinny but as an Angel fan I loved to watch him play, I love his genuine enthusiasm for the sport not just for the Angels, I love he got busted for weed and his career was able to survive it, I love he survived his brain clot issue , and his volunteer/charitable work is outstanding. He's not a very good announcer and he is a homer but he also gives it up for the oppossing team. He just doesn't dwell on negativity. I don't tend to hate someone because they are not good at their job unless it impacts my life.

It is his partner that bugs the beegeebees out of me.

2006-01-13 14:09:50
130.   blue22
126 - But don't you think that Chick would've reacted that way had the teams been reversed? I do, at least.

In the case of Hud or Hawk, they would sound like someone just shot their dog.

2006-01-13 14:18:11
131.   Ben P
Bob, Brentwood and Harvard-Westlake are mostly rivals in the sense that they compete for the same students, and most of the kids at the two schools (and Crossroads) came from the same handful of elementary schools and hang out in the same social circles. There is also some sports rivalry -- I remember playing them at basketball and volleyball, in particular, and a few other sports. When I was there, at least, there was no football rivalry because Brentwood was forced to play in an 8-man league because the local neighborhood would only let us have an 80-yard field. Now they play 11-man.
2006-01-13 14:21:58
132.   molokai
125
What is with this snooty disdain for bandwagon fans. Do you only count as a fan if you've endured the franchise pain? Many bandwagon fans become franchise fans but it took a good team to get them interested in the 1st place. How many fans have ignored the Clippers for 20 years but are now taking a look because for once they have a team worth paying attention to. If the Clipper franchise is lucky a certain % of these fans will become serious fans and as a Clipper fan I welcome them all.
2006-01-13 14:24:39
133.   molokai
I never thought of Chick as a homer as he was often their harshest critic. Since Chick passed on my love of the Lakers has diminished. I guess I was a Chick Bandwagon fan instead of a Laker franchise fan for the last 34 years.
2006-01-13 14:26:15
134.   Bob Timmermann
Since it's my joke, I will reuse it, but the Clippers bandwagon is just a guy with a Mr. Microphone in a pickup truck.
2006-01-13 14:29:50
135.   bluecrew22
I can't say that I've heard Harrelson announce a game (thankfully according to what I've read) but the thing that is about like 'nails on a chalkboard' regarding Hudler is that he constantly harps about everything great that the Angels are doing and barely discusses the performance or attributes of the other team. His 'smoking of the loco' only accentuates the fact that he is superficial. I don't think that anyone is that 'up' all the time. He does do good things with the developmentally disabled though, on the good side. It doesn't change my opinion of his broadcasting though. The Padres have an announcer who is almost as much of a homer as Hudler, although I haven't listened enough to remember his name.
2006-01-13 14:32:34
136.   Bob Timmermann
Ted Leitner always refers to the Padres as "My Padres". Ted Leitner is a blight on the human race. I hate him like the way Magua hated Colonel Munro.
2006-01-13 14:33:20
137.   Strike4
The lack of broadcaster continuity has almost certainly hurt the Angels fan intensity when compared to Vinnie. According to Wikipedia, the Angels have employed 29 (!) different announcers starting in 1961 including 14 major league players, 1 ex-Dodgers (Drysdale), 2 ex-Angels (Hudler and Jackson) and 3 ex-Dodgers/Angels (Reuss, Fairly and Ken Brett).
2006-01-13 14:36:25
138.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
125-Thanks for another supporter. The Angels will always be the red headed step child of Los Angeles.
2006-01-13 14:38:51
139.   blue22
138 - The Angels will always be the red headed step child of Los Angeles.

In a literal sense too. My dislike towards the Angels is traced back to the year they went "red".

2006-01-13 14:39:44
140.   Jon Weisman
131 - When I was there, I think Harvard's athletic rival was Leuzinger for some reason. I think we were often competing for third place in the Pioneer League or something.

Senior year we had "Crush Leuzinger" T-shirts. I was wearing it one day at Stanford and someone thought that was my name.

Growing up in Woodland Hills, I didn't hang out with any Brentwood kids. Not even an Oakwood kid. Mainly Taft kids. A few Calabasas and ECR.

2006-01-13 14:39:51
141.   LAT
Thanks for the good wishs re: middle school interviews.

112. "In my day, we had junior highs, and we liked it! And they just took us in anyway."

Bob, times have changed. I don't know if this is accurate but the rumor is that at the Windward School, which is the "it" school right now, they have approx. 500 applications for 50 spots.

As for the competition between Brentwood and Harvard-Westlake: I think they compete for donors more than anything else. They are both endowed like a mid-size college.

2006-01-13 14:42:19
142.   Jon Weisman
138 - Is your only criteria about Los Angeles? Like, if I acknowledge that Anaheim is not in Los Angeles, can we let that go?

Anyway, the commenter in 125 said he roots for the Angels and would like to see them in the World Series against the Dodgers.

2006-01-13 14:44:21
143.   King of the Hobos
Well, I went to an ol' fashioned junior high, and that was only a few years ago, so times haven't changed that much. Of course, I don't live where all those schools are, so it may not count
2006-01-13 14:49:37
144.   Bob Timmermann
Polytechnic High School in Sun Valley is officially John H. Francis Polytechnic High School. John H. Francis was an educator who pioneered the concept of the junior high.

And the LAUSD no longer has junior highs.

2006-01-13 14:50:52
145.   Curtis Lowe
I hated school.
2006-01-13 14:55:10
146.   Blue Thrue and Thrue
130 Nope, I can't imagine Chick urging someone to block a Laker's game-winning shot attempt.

And I don't hold that against him. I think he felt that if he didn't root openly for the Lakers, he wasn't being honest to the fans. I can understand that view.

2006-01-13 14:55:56
147.   Marty
[fogie_rant]
When I hear about my friend's kids having to do interviews to get into junior high/middle schools it just doesn't compute for me. The last thing I'd want to do is subject some poor 12-year-old to a high-stress situation.
[/fogie_rant]

The Rex Hudler drinking game should for every time he shortens a player's name into a cute nickname.

2006-01-13 14:56:36
148.   LAT
145. I hated grade school and Jr. high. I liked high school (girls and sports) but I went to grade school here and high schhool in Rhode Island. I'll say this, school is a heck of a lot harder today than when I was in it. 6th grade today is like 8th grade 15 years ago.
2006-01-13 14:57:22
149.   Marty
145 I hated Junior High. Worst two years of my life.
2006-01-13 14:57:47
150.   Steve
I don't know if this is accurate but the rumor is that at the Windward School, which is the "it" school right now, they have approx. 500 applications for 50 spots.

So that's why all the arrests at Mar Vista Park lately.

Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2006-01-13 14:57:58
151.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
142-With all due respect Jon, I was referring to the first portion of his post. Pertaining to the bandwagon fans.

I understand Anaheim is seperate from Los Angeles. Why then is Arte Moreno so adament about including "Los Angeles" in front of "Angels".

I hope the courts uphold the city of Anaheim's grevience towards Moreno. The court proceedings started today.

I happen to be a die-hard Dodger fan who despises the Angels. This is where I stand on the matter. I'm sorry if it differs from yours. But differing opinions is what makes this site so great.

2006-01-13 15:00:27
152.   LAT
147 I agree. Private school is a mixed bag but the class size is what matters for her. She would quietly get lost in a class of 40 or a school of 3000.
2006-01-13 15:02:01
153.   Blue Thrue and Thrue
138 The Angels will always be the red headed step child of Los Angeles.

True, but some of us live in OC, and for us they're a pretty attractive redhead these days. Last fall, I had the option of either driving 15 minutes to see Vlad, Colon and friends push for the playoffs, or driving more than an hour to watch the Dodgers implode and be mismanaged by Tracy.

If you think that makes me a fair-weather fan, I would only mention how many times I posted to any Angels blog. (That would be somewhere around zero.)

2006-01-13 15:06:04
154.   Blue Thrue and Thrue
151 Why then is Arte Moreno so adament about including "Los Angeles" in front of "Angels".

It's got to be frustrating for advertisers and broadcasters to treat the Angels like a small-market team when they're in one of the biggest metropolitan areas in the country. Arte is just trying to do something about that. It's an off-the-wall way to go about it, but I give him credit for trying something.

2006-01-13 15:08:28
155.   Jon Weisman
151 - I'm all for differing opinions, and I'm not asking you to apologize for yours. What I'm challenging is what I've percieved to be a hostile tone from you about people who like the Angels - that anyone who would like the Angels must not be a real fan, that any Dodger fan who doesn't depise the Angels must not be a real Dodger fan.

It hasn't seemed like good-natured teasing - it's come across to me as mean. But maybe I'm misreading. Anyway, it's fine for you to dislike the Angels. I just hope that you've come to understand, contrary to what you wrote this morning, that liking both teams is fathomable.

2006-01-13 15:10:10
156.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
153- I know I am in the minority on this issue. But I will stand my ground. I love the Dodgers and would walk thru a blizzard uphill both ways to Chavez Ravine before ever going to see an Angels game live.

I would watch a disgruntled, injury plagued, mismanaged team ran by Jim Tracy for the next 10 years before ever having an afterthought of supporting the Angels.
The Dodgers are my one and only MLB team.

Go Dodgers!

2006-01-13 15:13:12
157.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
155- If I come off as being hostile I apologize. I never said people who support the Angels must not be real Dodger fans.
I just feel strongly about the issue.
2006-01-13 15:29:28
158.   Blue Thrue and Thrue
156 I love the Dodgers and would walk thru a blizzard uphill both ways to Chavez Ravine before ever going to see an Angels game live.

Yeah, I'm with Jon. I don't see what loving the Dodgers has to do with it. Going to Angel games gives you a chance to see players live that you'd otherwise only see on TV or in the rare interleague game. I want to see players such as A-Rod, Manny, Ichiro, the Unit, etc. every chance I get.

I guess, even more than I love the Dodgers, I just love baseball.

2006-01-13 15:30:08
159.   caseybarker
157-

The Angels aren't even in the NL. Reserve your animosity for the Giants, Braves, etc...

2006-01-13 15:33:15
160.   Jacob L
I'll admit to being irritated by all things Angel the last several years. Its urged along by co-workers who are huge Angel fans going back to 79, 82, 02 (but not really any of the bad years). Its not that Angel fans haven't suffered, its that by and large they suffer by ignoring, something that my Dodger disease simply does not allow.

When I really think about it, though, I wouldn't be bothered by the Angels at all if the Dodgers were what I think they should be (model organization, consistent winner, etc). And really, if the Dodgers truly get their act together, Arte's designs on being the big dog in town won't amount to much.

On the other topic, I've often felt that "Cal" is a construct of the athletic dept. that would like to distance itself from both the academic and political associations that the word "Berkeley" has. As such, I prefer Berkeley, or California, to Cal.

2006-01-13 15:33:23
161.   Blue Thrue and Thrue
So Jock, does that approach extend to TV also? If there's a ballgame on, but it's not a Dodger game, do you just say no? I'm not saying that's wrong, it's just foreign to me.
2006-01-13 15:33:51
162.   molokai
Jon I didn't know you were raised in Woodland Hills. My wife teaches at Woodlake and we live up the street. Did you happen to go to that grade school? Taft and ECR have put out some some serious ballplayers. I wonder if we could create a competitive ballteam. I know we'd have a HOF SS.
2006-01-13 15:38:35
163.   Jon Weisman
I went to Collier Street School. I grew up within walking distance of the In 'N' Out near Oakdale and Ventura.

Bob will put together your Taft-ECR baseball team in a flash.

2006-01-13 15:42:07
164.   Bob Timmermann
Taft has a Hall of Famer in Robin Yount. None from El Camino Real, unless you are wildly optimistic about Randy Wolf. Or perhaps Ryan McGuire will make a big comeback. Or Conor Jackson will become a big star.

The only other Taft player of note is Kelly Paris.

The best players from the Valley tend to come from the northern end (Kennedy, Granada Hills, Chatsworth): Garret Anderson, Jon Garland, Dave Schmidt, Steve Reed, Larry Beinfest (OK, not much of a player, but he's a GM!), Terrmel Sledge.

2006-01-13 15:45:24
165.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
159-It's posts like these we can do without. Please don't tell me which teams to have animosity for.
2006-01-13 15:47:12
166.   Matt Welch
"Its not that Angel fans haven't suffered, its that by and large they suffer by ignoring"

Not remotely my experience. We suffered pretty intensely, and in an involved fashion, for more than 40 years in the wilderness.

2006-01-13 15:47:17
167.   Blue Thrue and Thrue
164 Granada Hills, my alma mater, has one HOFer who played for the Yankees. The catch is, he's in the NFL Hall of Fame: John Elway. He was seven lockers down from me when I went there, and I got to see him beat Strawberry's Crenshaw team in the City Championship. If I remember right, he batted well over .400 his senior year, played right field and was a bullpen stopper when they needed someone with a serious fastball.
2006-01-13 15:48:02
168.   caseybarker
Oh, come on.
2006-01-13 15:48:50
169.   molokai
I am widly optimistic about Conor Jackson and Wolfe will come back even stronger. I expected more just because those are recent players. When I scour the minor league numbers in the Daily news I thought I'd seen several ECR players over the past decade but I won't argue with the man who has access to all the information in the world at his fingertips even if he won't cut Frank Robinson a break once in a while.
2006-01-13 15:51:15
170.   caseybarker
167-

I remember a co-worker from Lancaster who talked about going to school with Elway.

The best baseball player my school ever produced was Bob Ojeda (from Mt. Whitney High in Visalia), but that was before my time.

2006-01-13 15:51:55
171.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
161-Sure I'll watch Angels games on T.V. But I will always root for the team there playing against.(just teasing)

I just won't spend my money going to support the Angels at home.

2006-01-13 15:54:13
172.   Jacob L
166 All due respect to any fans for whom that is the case. My experience, just with people that I know, is that Angel fans have the ability to tune out sometimes for up to a decade. If I had tuned out the last decade of Dodger baseball, I'd probably be better off for it.
2006-01-13 15:55:27
173.   Blue Thrue and Thrue
My uncle was actually the football and baseball coach at Granada when Elway was there. And Elway never forgot him, inviting him to coach in his football camps, flying him in to Bronco games gratis, and even to his HOF induction. Pretty impressive that he never forgot those who helped him early on.
2006-01-13 15:55:46
174.   DodgerJoe
RE: 163/164--Love the talk about high school sports. My brother is an assistant varsity baseball coach at ECR.

Although history shows that the best baseball players have come from the North valley, that trend has shifted. ECR and Chatsworth have a ton of D1 baseball prospects and signees.

I went to Notre Dame in Sherman Oaks, a decent baseball program nowadays, but a football factory.

2006-01-13 15:57:22
175.   LAT
With all the turmoil and problems the Dodgers have had, I don't really care about hating any other team, even the Giants. I just want the Dodgers to get fixed and win. If the Giants or any other team are behind the Dodgers in the standings (and stay there) I could care less about them.
2006-01-13 16:00:19
176.   molokai
175
I'm with you, I was always more interested in us winning then hating on other teams but the year Piazza knocked the Giants out of the pennant race is still a very sweet memory. One of the most enjoyable games I've ever been to.
2006-01-13 16:00:46
177.   caseybarker
That brings me to the true reasons for being a fan. Being a fan of a team seems to be separate, in some instances, from being a fan of the game.
2006-01-13 16:01:31
178.   molokai
174
Doesn't Chatsworth have the sophmore who hit one out at Dodger stadium during the title game?
2006-01-13 16:03:32
179.   LAT
173. Yes but will he give him a deal on a car from one of his many dealerships:-)
2006-01-13 16:04:32
180.   deburns
BP has an article on top rookie prospects, position by position. Under 2B, it touts Howie Kendrick of the Anaheim Angels of Anaheim as having the best PECOTA projection of any 2B in baseball, "including Jeff Kent, who isn't even a 2B anymore"!!!. Emphasis added. Where did they get this?
2006-01-13 16:05:13
181.   DodgerJoe
RE 178 -- You're right. He's a 3rd baseman named Matt Dominguez (I think). Great talent.
2006-01-13 16:07:52
182.   Bob Timmermann
173
So does your last name start with an N?

I believe John Elway played third base most of the time at Granada Hills. He didn't pitch much of his senior season because of injuries, but he came in during the City Championship game. He got out of a big jam when Crenshaw's coach, with Darryl Strawberry and Chris Brown due up, asked Strawberry to SACRIFICE!!! He bunted into a force play. I believe then Brown struck out in to a K-CS-DP.

I consider Chatsworth to be in the north part of the San Fernando Valley. Chatsworth and Granada Hills mark the ends of the "Porn Belt"

2006-01-13 16:13:32
183.   LAT
182. So Crenshaw's coach must have been Jim Tracy
2006-01-13 16:16:06
184.   scareduck
164 - I thought Kennedy only played for CSUN, and was born/raised in the Inland Empire? Or is that what you're counting?
2006-01-13 16:18:09
185.   Bob Timmermann
184
I was referring to John F. Kennedy High School at 11254 Gothic Ave., Granada Hills, CA 91344 and winner of six LA City baseball championships.
2006-01-13 16:18:49
186.   Jon Weisman
173, 182 - Elway didn't play for Stroh? It was Neumaier? (sp?)
2006-01-13 16:19:46
187.   molokai
180
I'm guessing it was someone who forgot we signed Nomar to play 1st and not move Kent from 2nd to 1st as was talked about at one time. For all of the knowledge BP and other notable baseball writers(Rob Neyer) have you'd be shocked at how many things they don't know compared to your roto hounds who have to know everything about everyone.
2006-01-13 16:20:33
188.   Bob Timmermann
Home runs hit by high schoolers at Dodger Stadium:
Home runs at Dodger Stadium
Bob Grant, Westchester 1975
Jim Evans, Venice 1976
Rondal Rollin, Carson 1977
Darryl Strawberry, Crenshaw 1980
Byron Griffin, Banning 1982
Kevin Farlow, Kennedy 1985
John Dolack, Palisades 1985 (2)
Ernie Soto, Venice 1987
Mike Kerber, Canoga Park 1987
Danny Gil, Poly 1987
Kevin Serr, Kennedy 1995
Miguel Gallardo, Banning 1997 (Grand slam)
Raymond LeDuc, El Camino Real 1997
Ryan Braun, Granada Hills, 2002
Bryan Petersen, Chatsworth, 2003
Ryan Dominguez, Chatsworth, 2005

Farlow's homer in 1985 was a walkoff homer. He hit the ball 330 feet and 2 inches down the left field line.

2006-01-13 16:24:16
189.   molokai
182
That is amazing. I remember Strawberry as the HS phenom. He was asked to bunt!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Hypothetical- last ballgame in your career at your HS, would you just blow off your coach and hit a homerun since he couldn't really do anything to you since your career is just about over and in several months you'll be the number one pick in the baseball draft? The worse that could happen is DS hitting into a DP and I don't think he did that very often in HS if ever.
2006-01-13 16:24:41
190.   molokai
188
How many were 15 years old?
2006-01-13 16:24:44
191.   Blue Thrue and Thrue
182 Negatory on my last name.

Can't remember which position he played his senior year, so I defer to you on that. But I'm pretty sure he played some outfield while he was there.

If I'm right, though, Granada had something like four squeeze bunts during that championship game? Am I way off on that, Bob? I remember asking my uncle, Darryl Stroh, about it, and he said bunting was a secret weapon of theirs because high school players are usually not used to fielding them and often screw them up.

2006-01-13 16:26:35
192.   molokai
188
That is totally showing off. Keep it up.
2006-01-13 16:27:14
193.   Blue Thrue and Thrue
186 Neumaier (sp?) was the head football coach, and Stroh was the assistant football coach and managed the baseball team. While I was there, anyway (class of '80).
2006-01-13 16:31:24
194.   overkill94
170 What the heck, I went to Mt. Whitney! I thought i was the only Visalian here.

You mustn't forget Jim Wohlford either (even though ESPN named him one of the worst players ever with over 1,000 ABs recently); he was my coach when I was 8 and then cut me in junior high.

2006-01-13 16:32:44
195.   DodgerJoe
188 - great bit of information

184 - a bit of info on Adam Kennedy...played at CSUN, went to high school at JW North in Riverside. I should know, my wife went there and dated him

2006-01-13 16:37:30
196.   Bob Timmermann
Here's what I wrote about the 1979 City Championship game on an out of date website so I won't link to it:
June 6, 1979
Granada Hills Highlanders 10, Crenshaw Cougars 4
W - John Elway
L - Darryl Strawberry
No championship game has had the personalities and superstars that showed up on this night. Granada Hills was seeking its second straight title and featured a third baseman by the name of John Elway. Crenshaw was led by a tall, thin young slugging outfielder/pitcher by the name of Darryl Strawberry. In addition, the Cougars had future National League All-Star Chris Brown playing third base.

With all this talent, a great game was expected. However, not unlike many of the Super Bowls Elway would go on to play in, the game itself was a disappointment.

After Granada Hills grabbed a 2-0 lead in the first, Crenshaw came back with three runs in the top of the third off of starting pitcher John Stevens, one of which scored when Stevens let a return throw from the catcher go through into center field inadvertantly as he thought there was a steal attempt on. After miscues like this, Elway was summoned from third base to the mound to pitch for the first time since early in the season. Elway quelled the rally and the Highlanders regained the lead in the bottom of the third with two runs off of Strawberry.

The game turned dramatically in the top of the fifth. Crenshaw had its first two runners reach and Strawberry was at the plate. Despite being considered one of the best hitting prospects ever, Strawberry was told to sacrifice, which Elway turned into a force play at third. Still Crenshaw had two on with one out and Chris Brown up.

Now the call was for a double steal and the lead runner was gunned out at third. Elway then struck out Brown to end the inning.

In the bottom of the fifth, Granada Hills scored six times to chase Strawberry off the mound and into the outfield and Elway held on for a 10-4 victory, striking out Brown again to end the game.

(Granada Hills won its semifinal over South Gate by the score of 20-14)

2006-01-13 16:38:02
197.   scareduck
187 - or perhaps it is someone with the second sight who knows that Nomar will go down with yet another groin injury stretching to field a throw from third.
2006-01-13 16:41:47
198.   Bob Timmermann
I believe Elway's football coach was Jack Neumeier. He developed a one-back, multi-receiver offense for Elway when he arrived. It was revolutionary.

The football stadium at Granada Hills High is named after John Elway now.

2006-01-13 16:43:25
199.   Blue Thrue and Thrue
Thanks, Bob. That's a cool flashback. Did Granada win two baseball championships while Elway was there? That's how I remember it, but my memory lies like hell.
2006-01-13 16:45:45
200.   molokai
FYI-my favorite minor league analyst and who I consider the best at his job, Deric from HQ just came out with his top 100 list. Here is the number breakdown per team
LAD ... 9 ARI ... 7 LAA, TEX ... 6 BOS, FLA ... 5 ATL, BAL, KC, MIN, OAK ... 4 CHC, COL, DET, MIL, NYY, SEA ... 3 CHW, CIN, CLE, HOU, NYM, PHI, PIT, SD, SF ...................2 TOR, WAS ... 1
Show/Hide Comments 201-250
2006-01-13 16:46:21
201.   Bob Timmermann
Granada Hills also win the City championship in 1978 with a 4-2 win over Poly. Elway didn't do anything of note in that game. Granada Hills' big star that year was Doug Baker.

Baker has the unique triple of winning an L.A. City baseball championship, a College World Series title (at ASU), and play on a World Series winner (with the Tigers in 1984 although he didn't play in the postseason.)

2006-01-13 16:47:21
202.   GoBears
156 I happen to be a die-hard Dodger fan who despises the Angels. This is where I stand on the matter. I'm sorry if it differs from yours.

That's fine. No one can dispute your tastes. The dispute was over the "most people" part of your claim in 18: "I believe most people here despise the Angels... which you seem to have recanted in 156 by saying "I know I am in the minority on this issue."

So we agree that we disagree.

2006-01-13 16:48:18
203.   molokai
Forgot TB 2 and StLouis 2
2006-01-13 16:50:34
204.   GoBears
158 I guess, even more than I love the Dodgers, I just love baseball.

Well put. I think the most common reference for this sort of distinction is Raider fans. It has been said that a LOT of Raider fans are Raider fans, but not football fans. They just love the idea of the silver and black and the outlaw reputation, etc. I'm not saying all or even most Raider fans are like this, but perhaps more than for most teams (though I think the same can be said of a lot of 49er fans, especially during their heyday).

2006-01-13 16:50:41
205.   caseybarker
194-

Oh yeah, I tutored Wohlford's son, and my Dad played softball with him post career. I watched a fair amount of games at Shaz Field. I am class of 1995.

2006-01-13 16:54:07
206.   caseybarker
204-

Raider fans are people too.

2006-01-13 16:54:07
207.   Bob Timmermann
My recollection of Jim Wohlford from baseball cards was that he was a guy who needed to use a lot of sunscreen.
2006-01-13 16:54:46
208.   caseybarker
--and football fans
2006-01-13 16:54:55
209.   Bob Timmermann
Raider fans are people too.

Yeah, but so is Soylent Green.

2006-01-13 16:57:18
210.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
204-Don't compare my disliking for the Angels to rabid Raider fans. It's not even close to the same.

I love baseball too, just so happens I'm in love with the Dodgers.(lol) Quit taking cheap shots GoBears.

2006-01-13 16:57:31
211.   overkill94
205 Interesting, I was class of 1999 and my older sister was class of 1996.

Jason Wohlford was the typical spoiled rich kid (I played with/against him my whole life since we're the same age). Unfortunately, since he peaked physically in about 7th grade he never did much in high school and last I heard he was dealing drugs in Fresno. Not to mention the whole burning down his house thing from "burning incense and falling asleep".

2006-01-13 16:59:00
212.   overkill94
207 He's always had somewhat of a Benito Santiago-like crater face which hasn't allowed him to age too well.
2006-01-13 16:59:09
213.   caseybarker
I only have his 1987 card, but it is signed.
2006-01-13 16:59:42
214.   Marty
No baseball player of any note came out of my high school, Monrovia. We had a few football players. I played little league baseball with Steve Kemp. He won a batting title with the Tigers.
2006-01-13 17:08:20
215.   caseybarker
211-

Do you remember Jeff Alfano? He was in the Brewers organization last I heard. You may know his brother, Mark, too. His dad coached football.

2006-01-13 17:09:06
216.   overkill94
While my high school has only yielded two mediocre major leaguers, our rival Redwood graduated current Blue Jays hotshot Aaron Hill, a guy I played with since I was 10. Plus my high school had Mike Young, the former Broncos wide receiver as well as Kevin Costner's senior year (he mentions Visalia a couple times in Bull Durham). Aside from that, you won't hear much about Visalia in the sports world.
2006-01-13 17:09:18
217.   GoBears
I love baseball too, just so happens I'm in love with the Dodgers.(lol) Quit taking cheap shots GoBears.

That wasn't even a shot, let alone a cheap shot. I was responding to Blue T&T's distinction between being a fan of a team and a fan of the sport. Neither he nor I intimated that the two are necessarily mutually exclusive, or that you, mr strap, are one and not the other. You'll notice that in my 204 missive about Raider fans, there is no reference to you or your comments whatsoever. It ain't all about you.

In 202, I merely demonstrated, using your own words, that you've backtracked from your original claim that most Dodger fans despite the Angels. Plenty of people root for the both. You started the conversation making a claim about "most people" and then admitted, quite forthrightly, that you realize you're in the minority on the issue. I also said, quite explicitly that it's fine if you don't, that no one can dispute your tastes. You like what you like and hate what you hate. Fine. God bless. I was praising you for reconsidering your original claim about "most people." If you choose to accept a compliment about your open-mindedness as an insult, I guess we'll have to agree to disagree about that too.

2006-01-13 17:11:37
218.   overkill94
215 I knew Jeff, he and my sister went out a couple times. His uncle (Dan Alfano)was my high school baseball coach my sophomore and junior varsity years until he quit. Last I heard, he got mad at his pitcher, pulled a Crash Davis and told the batters what was coming and got suspended or something. I'm pretty sure he's been out of baseball for a while now.
2006-01-13 17:11:59
219.   GoBears
I think the only major leaguer who came out of my high school (until I stopped paying attention about 15 years ago) was Don Slaught. Ooh, neato! We did have Tracy Austin, however. Apparently, she was never in school (she's a few years older than I am) - constantly traveling for the tour.
2006-01-13 17:13:43
220.   Steve
last I heard he was dealing drugs in Fresno.

Probably to Giant prospects

2006-01-13 17:15:51
221.   caseybarker
Very funny. Remember when the Giants had an A ball team in Fresno?
2006-01-13 17:16:04
222.   overkill94
220 Wouldn't doubt it. I went to a Grizzlies game a few years ago and every face they put up on the jumbotron had a very glazed look, the worst of which was Cody Ransom.
2006-01-13 17:18:02
223.   caseybarker
It's the look of a million dollar bonus baby having to live and work in Fresno.
2006-01-13 17:18:21
224.   Steve
Remember when the Giants had an A ball team in Fresno?

You mean 2005?

2006-01-13 17:19:05
225.   Steve Saxs Sweaty Jockstrap
217- Thats Mr. Jockstrap to you. Get it right.
2006-01-13 17:19:30
226.   Bob Timmermann
The Giants farm team in Fresno last year was AAA.
2006-01-13 17:19:52
227.   D4P
224
The A ball team was in Frisco, not Fresno.
2006-01-13 17:20:16
228.   Matt Welch
My high school (Lakewood) has had mostly up-the-middle guys -- Bobby Crosby, Chris Gomez, Damion Easley, Craig Grebeck, Mike Fitzgerald, Larry Casian.

Plus good baseball writers, like Rich Lederer and Eric Neel.

2006-01-13 17:20:18
229.   overkill94
224 That's their AAA team, I think way back in the day the Giants had a California League team in Fresno, I could be wrong though.
2006-01-13 17:23:17
230.   Steve
227 -- That's the closest to what I was getting at.
2006-01-13 17:24:19
231.   caseybarker
Their A ball team played in the old Fresno City College stadium--Ratcliffe stadium. It was the worst place I ever saw a baseball game.

I wish the A ball team in Ventura was still there.

2006-01-13 17:25:25
232.   Bob Timmermann
The Texas Rangers have a minor league team in Frisco, Texas. (AA).

Once there was a transaction:

Texas - Recalled pitcher Frank Francisco from Frisco (Texas League).

I found it humorous.

2006-01-13 17:31:01
233.   gvette
214-- Marty, you're being modest about Monrovia's alumni. Wasn't one of Charlie Manson's girls (Leslie Van Houten) a homecoming princess there?
2006-01-13 17:34:24
234.   caseybarker
I hear Manson's a heckuva shortstop at Corcoran's prison league team.
2006-01-13 17:37:25
235.   Marty
Funny you should ask Gvette. The Van Houtens grew up around the corner from me. I knew the little brother (they were all adopted), my older sister was in Leslie's grade. After the murders, the family moved away. I've heard that Lslie was pretty wild in high school.
2006-01-13 17:38:54
236.   overkill94
234 And the story comes full-circle. My family ended up in Visalia because my dad's engineering company was building...the Corcoran prison.
2006-01-13 17:39:50
237.   Marty
Manson is very scrappy. A good chemistry-guy that you want in the clubhouse.
2006-01-13 17:43:44
238.   gvette
235--Last year film crews were all over Myrtle Ave/Old Town Monrovia filming the latest version of "Helter Skelter". Doubt Ms. Van Houten would recognize the place if she ever got her parole.

On a baseball note, my mechanic in Monrovia tells me that Darrell (Howdy Doody) Evans lived there for a long time.

2006-01-13 17:46:04
239.   Bob Timmermann
In Monrovia, there's a restaurant that serves Canadian style food.
2006-01-13 17:49:09
240.   Sam DC
How about Liberian food?
2006-01-13 18:03:53
241.   gvette
240--Sorry Sam, all the best take out is next door in Sierra Leone.
2006-01-13 18:37:48
242.   thinkblue0
228-

Todd Zeile went to my highschool and lives up the street from me.

I've also known Ravens QB Kyle Boller since I was 8. I guess those are my highschool's two sports heroes......

2006-01-13 18:38:47
243.   Andrew Shimmin
236- The thread came full circle one step earlier. Bob indicated that he wanted to scalp Ted Leitner's kids in 136. Rough day on the DT board.

OT: Did root canal technology improve by great leaps and bounds recently, or am I a whole lot tougher than I would have guessed? I'd been dreading it for a month, but the worst part about the thing was the smell.

2006-01-13 18:48:59
244.   Bob Timmermann
I'm not so sold on eating Ted Leitner's heart though.
2006-01-13 18:53:03
245.   gcrl
my high school produced billy simas (who had a couple decent years for the white sox) and mark brunell. robin ventura went to the high school across the street, although he was already at oklahoma state when i started high school.
i played with and against a guy named brad dandridge in babe ruth and high school ball - he was in the dodgers system for a while, and scabbed with mike busch and some others in spring training '95.
2006-01-13 19:04:57
246.   molokai
Luckily you escaped the wrath of Mr. Butler.

238
Always thought Evans was one of the most underrated players of is era.

2006-01-13 19:06:02
247.   Steve
188 - Nice to see Venice representing. But apparently the high school ball was juiced in 1987 too.

Getting back to the original topic of this thread, the 11 herbs and spices of two-out RISP hitting are sort of bizarre, and the Angels "Baserunners, we don't need no stinkin baserunners" philosophy made a folk hero out of Jason Repko, which ought to be enough to earn from all of us our undying enmity. On the other hand, this is a team that stepped up and cut the hearts out of our undying hated foul enemies. When that blooper fell in front of that bloated walking Pfizer factory in left field, it was truly a great moment. Games 6 and 7 were transcendent, a fundamental victory over the fount of all evil in the universe. The Angels tax me greatly, but ultimately, such feelings are always tempered in the end, them having done us a good turn in our hour of greatest need.

2006-01-13 19:16:08
248.   regfairfield
188 You're missing at least one, Bob. In the 1999 (I believe, could have been 2000) D2 championship someone named (off the top my head) Jeff Tuttle hit one against West Torrance.
2006-01-13 19:21:52
249.   Bob Timmermann
My list was just for City section games because it was part of a presentation I gave at a SABR meeting.

The Southern Section keeps changing around. But the City Section has been a fixture at Dodger Stadium since 1969.

2006-01-13 19:45:06
250.   scareduck
247 - what kills me is Scioscia's hidden, laughable assertion that hitting with two out is a skill:

http://tinyurl.com/c7zwe

He may believe in this, but nobody, to my knowledge, actually has shown this is anything like a repeatable skill.

Show/Hide Comments 251-300
2006-01-13 19:49:23
251.   trainwreck
I love the Raiders and loathe the Angels if that helps anyone.
2006-01-13 20:33:09
252.   Sam DC
Well, the perfect capper to reading this high school thread was wife telling me she'd plucked Some Kind of Wonderful off the Tivo. Talk about your fine high school flix. g'night.
2006-01-13 20:49:17
253.   Scanman33
I was John Grabow's (Pirates) pitching coach in high school. I also played in the same HS program with Danny Patterson (I was on frosh when he was a senior).

Trevor Bell, 2005 first round pick of Anaheim, hit his first HS HR off of my pitcher out at the Glendora tournament...a slider that didn't slide to the tune of 385 to deep right.

Meanwhile, I'm going to Dodger Stadium on the 25th for a High School Coaches Award Reception.

Any chance of Frank or Neddy being there? Or do you suppose Don Newcombe will draw the short straw that night?

2006-01-13 20:51:38
254.   Marty
239 The Canadian Cafe! I know people who love the Poutine (cheese curds) there!
2006-01-13 21:10:54
255.   Andrew Shimmin
I'm not at all a health-food kinda guy, but the thought of french fries and cheese curds under gravy has always made me queasy. Do you have to wash it down with paint thinner?

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