Daily links for the LA Angels including Shields may have thrown his last pitch, Kazmir needs to prove he belongs, education on Abreu’s struggles and much more.
The Monkey Says: Shields had an elbow issue in his last outing, but insists he is fine. Even if he is healthy, the Halos are likely to use their bounty of young relief prospects instead of him whenever possible. I have to think that as long as he isn’t severely injured, Scioscia will give Shields the dignity of throwing at least one final farewell inning at home before the season is over.
The Story: Scott Kazmir needs to prove he belongs in the 2011 Angels’ rotation.
The Monkey Says: His start Wednesday was a solid step forward, but Kaz still has a lot of work to do to get back to his old form. With such a big payday due to him next season, the Halos are sure to give him every chance of securing his rotation slot next spring, but they will have a short leash with him once the regular season actually begins.
The Story: Why is Bobby Abreu hitting so poorly this season?
The Monkey Says: I’d love to be the one to educate the writer on why Abreu’s BABIP has plummeted this season, but I’m not sure I have any better of an answer than he does. It doesn’t look to me like his bat has slowed down and it is hard for me to accept bad luck as an excuse since it has really been a season-long struggle for Bob and not just one long, horribly unlucky stretch. Let’s just hope he is able to get back to normal next season.
The Story: Comparing Scot Shields to Trevor Hoffman.
The Monkey Says: Shields obviously compares quite well, which at the end of the day will be a real shame because Hoffman is likely going to get inducted into the Hall of Fame, but Shields will be lucky to even sniff Cooperstown since he pitched the eighth inning instead of the ninth innings his whole career.
The Story: September is an important evaluation period for the veteran Angels.
The Monkey Says: I agree that the team is going to have to take a long hard look at who should remain on the Angel roster beyond this season, but I doubt they are going to put any undue extra weight on any veteran’s performance in September.
The Story: Why not try Trumbo in the outfield now?
The Monkey Says: Because having a kid learn a new position while making his major-league debut is putting way too much on his plate, that’s why. Trumbo is trying to prove he is a legit big league hitter and doesn’t need any extra pressure because of a position change.