The Angels start a four game set with the Texas Rangers tonight needing just one win to close out the Rangers and take home their third straight division title.  But rather than assume they will eventually get that one win, I want them thinking about coffee.  Because, as Alec Baldwin in Glengarry Glen Ross so eloquently informed us, coffee is for closers.

The Angels really need to get themselves some coffee.

The odds of the Angels actually choking away a six-game lead with just seven games remaining is astronomically small, but there is no sense in them worrying themselves by keeping Texas’ slim hopes alive any longer than is entirely necessary.  Nor do the Halos need to do any further damage to their own self-confidence by letting this thing linger until the final game of the series on Thursday… or (gulp) beyond.

A win tonight will prove to the Rangers that the Angels were, in fact, the superior team all along and it will prove to the Angels that they really can hang with the best of the league, something they really need to sell themselves on after their recent slump and the looming prospect of another ALDS with the Boston Red Sox.  I, for one, will be watching this game closely with a hot mug of java in hand.

Texas Rangers (85-70) @ Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (91-64)

Starters: TEX – Tommy Hunter (9-4, 3.67 ERA)  LAA – Ervin Santana (7-8, 5.46 ERA)

Game Info: 7:05 PM PT TV-Fox Sports West, Radio-KLAA 830 AM, KFWB, KWKW 1330 AM

THREE Questions:

  • Can the Angels get to Tommy Hunter again like they did just last week or will they let themselves get baffled by yet another rookie?
  • Will Bad Ervin re-appear tonight or will Good Ervin make one final appearance before the end of the regular season?
  • Can Mike Napoli capitalize on his home run yesterday and get back in Mike Scioscia’s good graces before the post-season starts?

TWO Predictions:

  • The Rangers are exactly what the doctor ordered to get Vladimir Guerrero (who has just two homers this month, one against the Rangers) back in a groove right before the post-season starts (not that it is going to do anything to change his wretched post-season record, but a guy can dream, cant’ he?).
  • Since I am talking big about “coffee is for closers,” I’ll put my money where my mouth is and call my shot.  The Angels win this one 8-4.

ONE Wish:

  • I wish for the Angels to find a better way to deal with Hank Blalock who is murdering Angel pitchers this year to the tune of five homers and 10 RBIs in just 14 games.

ZERO Tolerance for… for the bullpen not taking the “coffee is for closers” mandate literally.  They’ve been awful lately and all need to take on a closer mentality from here on out to prevent any other disasters like we witnessed on Saturday.

Leave your own questions, answers, predictions or wishes as a comment or just hang out with us during the game or even chat with us on twitter (@MonkeyWithAHalo).