Purgatory Online

Monday, August 18, 2003

Ben Bolch's take on the Angels' sweep of the Tigers: the Angels "still have a faint pulse." Uh, whatever, Ben. Unfortunately, there are no less than five teams in the wild card race with stronger pulses, and two of them are 11 games ahead.

The sweep was nice, though. The Tigers have made a lot of teams look good this year, but scoring 25 runs in three games - even against the Tigers - allowed Angels fans to forget for a few days their seasonlong offensive woes. Scott Spiezio, Adam Kennedy, and Garret Anderson - who passed Brian Downing as the all-time Angels hits leader - all had a terrific series at the plate. Unfortunately, the Angels will need continued production from just about everyone in the order if they want to keep winning: the injury bug's latest victims are David Eckstein, Ben Weber, and Brendan Donnelly, none of whom are officially on the DL, but all of whom are likely to miss at least a few days. So now even the bullpen, which has been the Angels' only bulwark against injury in 2003, is crumbling.

Meanwhile, I did get to see one thing I've never seen before this weekend: a player take the field in a misspelled jersey. During Saturday's game, Adam Riggs made his second start for the Angels wearing "ANGEES" across his chest, and apparently didn't even notice until he came in to the dugout after the top of the first.

Anyway, here's the updated "ANAHEIM ANGELS 2003: THE DRIVE TO AVOID EMBARRASSMENT!" countdown:
3 wins to avoid 100 losses
8 wins to avoid matching their worst loss total
21 wins to finish at .500
12 Angels wins or Tigers losses to avoid the worst record in the AL
36 Angels wins or Rangers losses to avoid finishing last