Halo Headlines: Angels Will Interview Rangers AGM Levine, Kendrick Caught Up In Autograph Controversy, More New Advanced Defensive Metric Hurt Mathis’ Defensive Reputation

The October 19th, 2011 edition of daily news for the LA Angels including Angels to interview Rangers’ Thad Levine for GM spot, Kendrick gets caught up in autograph controversy, a new defensive metric provides more evidence against Mathis being an elite defensive catcher and much more…

The Story: The Angels will interview Texas assistant GM Thad Levine for their own general manager opening.

The Monkey Says: Levine is a hot commodity after two straight AL pennants for Texas and I think the Angels are clearly taking the “if you can’t beat ’em, steal their assistant GM” strategy.  It is also worth nothing that Levine will interview with Baltimore as well and that he grew up as a diehard Oriole fan, so the Halos are at something of a disadvantage here.

The Story: Howie Kendrick allegedly refused to sign an autograph for young boy and his family, making the boy cry.

The Monkey Says: This whole story is ridiculous and I almost don’t even want to dignify it by linking to it, but it actually got some run on the internet today, so I figured it needed covering.  First off, Kendrick has every right to refuse to sign autographs and take photos, especially when you bother him at his own home.  More importantly, you really need to take the story with a grain of salt because if this family was so innocent and well-meaning, they never would have gone to some trashy internet tabloid with the story in the first place.

The Story: A new statistical study on catchers blocking pitches sheds new light on Jeff Mathis’ overall defensive value.

The Monkey Says: The article barely focuses on Mathis, but you can see his stats if you download the spreadsheets.  I’ll save you the time and tell you he rates as maybe above average at blocking balls.  The real value here is that this study is the last missing piece in being able to provide a mostly comprehensive rating for catcher defense.  We now have studies that show how catchers rate at framing, suppressing the running game and blocking pitches.  Game calling is missing from the equation still and maybe never be added, but with those three areas down it is now clear (and you can derive this from this article) that Mathis is, in fact, a good defensive catcher, just not anything close to being an elite defensive catcher or good enough in terms of runs saved with his glove to offset the number of runs he adds (or fails to add) with his bat.

The Story: A comprehensive list of where each Angel prospect will be playing winter ball this year.

The Monkey Says: Venezuela appears to be rather popular.  I guess political turmoil is better than having your head lopped off my a drug cartel.

The Story: Many Angel players are pulling for Texas in the World Series since so many former Angels are on the team.

The Monkey Says: Traitors!  All of them!!!!  But seriously, this just goes to show that the way we fans feel about rival teams isn’t necessarily shared by the actual players involved.

The Story: Are Angel fans pulling for Texas too?

The Monkey Says: If you, loyal reader, are rooting for Texas, kindly leave a comment with your IP address in this post so that I can block you from ever visiting my site again.  Nothing personal, it is just that you are a horrible person.  Have a nice day.


The Story: The 2011 Angles off-season outlook examines the many options the Angels have this off-season.

The Monkey Says: It sounds like the rhetoric about people expecting the Angels to spend big this winter has, rightfully, died down but big names are still going to be linked to them.  The one problem I have with this article is that it glosses over the bullpen woes.  Guys like Takahashi and Thompson did have good stats this year, but neither is reliable or someone Scioscia trusts.  If the new GM falls for the same trap, expect yet another year of the blowpen.

Garrett Wilson

About Garrett Wilson

Garrett Wilson is the founder and Supreme Overlord of Monkeywithahalo.com and editor at The Outside Corner. He's an Ivy League graduate, but not from one of the impressive ones. You shouldn't make him angry. You wouldn't like him when he is angry.