January 11, 2012

Basking in the afterglow and other random thoughts

Okay, so you might be wondering… when is True Grich going to have a new blog post? Well, let’s just say that I’ve been basking in the afterglow of the Albert signing and really haven’t had much to say; at least not until now (not that what I’m about to post is earth-shattering or anything).

Fair warning… this post will be totally random at times…

I was asked recently by Sam Miller of the OC Register what move I would make to ensure the Angels overtake the Rangers in 2012. I was participating in a survey of sorts for him and the answers from various bloggers and writers can be found HERE.

My response was “"To me the most important thing is that Kendrys Morales is healthy. That's not really a move or a strategy, but an important component in this year's season. He has to be in the middle of that lineup, hitting behind Albert. :”

"I know most people will say that the Angels need to sign Ryan Madson and that would be a good move, but not my choice. The thing that concerns me the most is the dwindling offensive numbers of Bobby Abreu. He cannot be the Angels DH in 2012. It all hinges on Morales. If he's healthy -- he can DH and they can move Abreu (although unlikely with his contract). If not -- they have to play Mike Trout and let Torii DH."

And that brings me to today’s post.

The news on Kendrys Morales is encouraging. Morales has been cleared to ramp up his rehab activities.

I have to tell you – the whole Kendrys Morales thing makes me nervous. I honestly believe that without him contributing in the middle of the Angels’ lineup – the Angels will have a hard time climbing back on top of the AL West. Until I see him on the field in a game I’m going to be a little anxious about his situation. He’s just too critical to any hopes we have for big things in 2012.

So – even though I’m tremendously excited about Albert as an Angel, I’m not ready to be my normal exuberant self. I need to know that Kendrys is also going to play regularly before I can really dawn my rose colored glasses and go all crazy.

Speaking of Kendrys – I have to tell you something else that weighs on my mind. Let’s say he comes back as a DH and has a monster season. What happens if the Angels get to the World Series? More specifically – how does Morales get in the lineup when the Angels play in a NL city, where there’s no DH? I know, I know – I’m getting way ahead of myself, but the idea of having a key offensive weapon in a DH makes me nervous.

It makes me believe that at some point – Morales might become trade bait. In my fantasy world – Morales would be part of a deal for Evan Longoria, but that’s highly unlikely. If you know me at all, one of the things I hate the most is when fans come up with trades that are about as realistic as Jeff Mathis hitting .300 (ooh, I got a Mathis jab in even though he’s not on the team anymore).

Since I’m venturing into the shady world of speculation (okay, it’s not really shady) – let me bring up a very popular rumor. Yadier Molina is the final year of his contract with the St. Louis Cardinals. They haven’t been able to work out a contract extension as of yet. Molina to the Angels in 2013?

It’s easy to see this one is gaining popularity. Molina will be a free agent in 2013. His best friend is Albert Pujols (reportedly). His brothers have both played for Mike Scioscia. Yadier Molina could be an Angel in 2013.

I have to admit, the idea brings a smile to my face. Molina is easily my favorite catcher to watch. He is an unbelievable defensive catcher and would be a perfect fit in Anaheim.

Speaking of smiling… I’ve been doing a lot of that since Albert signed. I still catch myself feeling a bit stunned and very blessed to know I will get to watch Albert on a regular basis. It just blows my mind.

Since today’s post has lots of random elements to it – let me talk about some other random thoughts I’ve had.

I have a concern about C.J. Wilson. Wilson is happy to be back home and that makes me nervous. Will he have a little too much fun (even though he doesn’t drink, smoke, take drugs, etc.)? I mean he’s going to be surrounding by his friends and all that. Will that hurt his focus? I don’t know Wilson enough to formulate a real answer – but the thought has crossed my mind.

This Sports Illustrated piece made me wonder… In it, Wilson said, “You meet people all the time. But it's harder for me to socialize and go out during the season. And all my friends live in L.A. or New York, so during the season, I'm mostly kicking it by myself.

Ummm, C.J. isn't alone any more. Just saying.

Oh and in case you’re wondering… I know I wasn’t keen on the idea of the Angels going after Wilson, but now that he’s here, I’ve come to accept him as one of us.

It certainly didn’t hurt when I went back to read about what he had say about the fans in Oakland this past year. He said, “I hate pitching there. The mound sucks, the fans suck. There’s no fans there. It’s too bad because the fans that are there are really adamant and they’re really stoked on the team and they play drums and they wave flags and that’s cool. But, you know some games you go there and there’s like 6,000 people there. It’s kind of sad because it’s a major league team and there’s guys out there that are obviously pretty good players.”

That works for me.

While I’m here… every now and then people will ask me for advice about spring training. I usually refer them to a blog post I did about the subject: A fan’s guide to the cactus league. It’s still pretty relevant.

Program note: I have several things that I had planned to write about over the past couple years and never got around to them and I hope to get to them between now and spring training. Some of it may be dated material, but I hope they'll still be interesting pieces. So stay please stay tuned.

Happy New Year and thank you very much for taking the time to read my blog. I'm always humbled when I meet people who tell me that they enjoy this site.

That’s about it for now… 41 days till pitchers and Molina’s report.

1 comment:

  1. Did you hear what Bourjos said about Kendrys today? Very encouraging!