Game Recap 5/26/11: Angels 4 Athletics 1

I didn’t see much of this game, but I did get to follow al of it on Gameday. What I did see were some pretty spiffy home runs, a nice RBI “hit” by Bourjos, and two rookies busting a slump in grand fashion.

Angels 4 A’s 1 

Game Notes

  • My favorite thing about Peter Bourjos is how he can force errors with his speed. There is no such thing as a routine grounder when it’s off Bourjos’ bat, especially in a tight situation with RISP. Bourjos has been in a big offensive slump as of late, or he could have just been playing way over his head last month. Regardless it would be nice to see him find some suitable middle ground between the two, preferably leaning heavier towards his performance to start the season. What Scioscia needs to do with Bourjos is to stop putting him at the top of the lineup, he hasn’t worked there yet and he isn’t looking like he’s going to. When he gets AB’s in the 9-hole Bourjos makes those AB’s count. When he bats at the top of the lineup he tries to hard to be a textbook leadoff hitter instead of hitting like Bourjos.
  • Conger and Amarista, busting two slumps on back to back pitches. Both players came out with two hits while Amarista drew a walk, but there offense wasn’t the highlight of their games. It was that sweet defensive play to nail Pennington at home and keep the game tied. You could see Amarista charging up all his might preparing to unleash a mighty hadouken at home, showing us all at home (and most importantly Garrett) that he can in fact play like a big boy. That was the kind of play you would expect from someone who is listed at 5’8, it’s highly doubtful anyone shorter could have made that play. He still has his uses on the big league roster Garrett, don’t discount him just yet.
  • Don’t forget about Conger and his sweet tag at the plate. Even more impressive was the nab he made off Amarista’s throw, that was the most athletic play I’ve seen an Angels catcher make all year. My favorite part of the play was the fact that it was completed by the Angels youngest players. 
  • Back to back homers by Hunter and Callaspo?? Is that production I see coming from the middle of the lineup? After watching the top and bottom of the lineup take care of all the heavy lifting last month it’s nice to see some signs of life coming from the middle of the lineup. Seeing Hunter get it together after Wells and Howie went down is really encouraging to see for this lineup, especially the power-starved part (aka all of it). 

Halo Hero

Amarista & Conger

Both players had strong offensive showings, both players snapped a troublesome offensive slump. I was on the fence as to who deserved the title of Halo Hero, but that defensive play showed both players athletic ability and pure talent. Are they ready to compete at the Major League level everyday? Maybe not, but with the way they are handling themselves up here one can’t help but wonder if they are better off learning the ropes up here? Amarista could use a little more seasoning in the minors, yet Conger is carving himself a nice little niche on this roster.