Purgatory Online

Wednesday, April 07, 2004

Well, that certainly didn't suck.

There's not a whole lot of in-depth discussion to do here, in part because it was just the first game of the season, and I'm resisting the temptation to read too much into it, and in part because most discussion of strategy became moot sometime around the point at which the Troyminator parked his second dinger. A few items of interest, though:

* Man, the Angels were aggressive at the plate. This isn't a team that's built around the base on balls, but it almost seemed like they thought that taking four wide would give them leprosy. It's hard to argue with the result - 10 runs on 12 hits, and the pitch Glaus whacked into center for that second homer did come on a 3-0 count - but, on the other hand, Jose Guillen looked like he was pressing a little.

* Glaus is back. I should know better than to say such a thing, but getting healthy and not having to deal with contact lenses looks like it's made a tremendous difference. In this lineup, there are about six different guys who could hit two home runs on any given night, but I strongly suspect that Glaus doing so on opening day will turn out to be more emblematic than, say, Jose Guillen getting the first dinger of the year, or Vlad Guerrero the first walk.

* The Angels took one walk during Moyer's 5.2 innings pitched, the aforementioned free pass to Guerrero. Moyer's pretty stingy - about 1 walk per 3.1 IP. After Moyer's departure, they continued to go after pitches, and finished the game with a grand total of two bases on balls. Then again, why walk when you can hit?

* Colon, meanwhile, issued no walks, a tremendous sign, while maintaining a 95-97 mph velocity on his fastball and using breaking pitches on just about any count. I thought he looked a little rocky in the second, but settled down nicely after that. A lot of people say that Colon just gets stronger the deeper he gets into the game, and that was certainly in evidence last night. His by-inning pitch count: 18, 31, 14, 16, 8, 13.

* I'm sure Scioscia's not exactly doing the Myposian Dance of Joy about having to use Frankie Rodriguez last night. I expected him to keep Shields in for the last three innings of work (thus earning Shields one of those rare laugher saves). Can't blame him for pulling Shields, though, nor for pulling Gregg - both looked like they were having command problems. Both Shields and Rodriguez are probably burned for tonight, but Gregg only pitched to two hitters and is probably available. We should see the 2004 debut of Sele or Weber - or both - tonight.