3 Things We Learned From The Angels’ 8-3 Loss To The Rangers

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Updated: April 12, 2017

The Angels came into the night winners of their last four ballgames. The latter two of the four are especially noteworthy given that they trailed in each case. Their streak was snapped on Wednesday night after the Texas Rangers beat their AL West rival 8-3. It is just the type of performance Texas needed after getting their hearts broken Tuesday night.

Right-hander Jesse Chavez was on the hill today for the Angels. His second start of the 2017 campaign did not go as well as the home opener last Friday. The hurler only made it through 4.1 innings prior to Manager Mike Scioscia pulling the plug on the former Dodger. Chavez pitched decently through the first four innings; however, the way the start of the fifth went proved to be the nail in the coffin for the Los Angeles’ number five starter. Chavez coughed up two round-trippers to Texas, two walks, and five earned runs. He finished with three K’s in his outing.

  1. This Team Does Not Give Up

The game did not originally swing in the Halos’ favor. In the top of the second stanza, two Rangers went deep against Chavez: Mike Napoli and Elvis Andrus. Despite the early trouble, Chavez got some backup from what has been quite a resilient Angels’ lineup. In the bottom half of the inning, a pair of sacrifice flies knotted the contest up at two runs apiece. The Halos’ red storm did not stop there. The following inning Mike Trout put the lumber to good use by pulverizing a shot well over the center field wall. It may not have been enough this time around, but it still reveals that this squad is resilient in scope. A total comeback was simply not in the cards tonight.

  1. The Bullpen Cannot And Will Not Be Perfect

For the most part, the Angels’ bullpen has been mighty good through the first nine games. They have eaten up several more outs each game than would be preferred, though. Today’s happenings appeared to be a small indicator of its effects on the bunch. In the top of the seventh, reliever Yusmeiro Petit allowed a solo blast to the Rangers’ leadoff man Carlos Gomez. Petit surrendered a four pitch walk a couple batters later. Additionally, Texas further attacked the Halos’ pen in the top of the ninth by adding another two runs.

It may seem like too tiny of a sample size to analyze (especially since Petit, for instance, entered the night not having allowed a run all year). It could be a hint that the Angels’ bullpen in general needs a breather. They have not received too many of those so far. It is only a theory. But the theory may have some truth to it granted the 2017 campaign is young.

  1. Esky Will Occasionally Have An Off Night

Third baseman Yunel Escobar has been the Halos’ hottest hitter all season. As a matter of fact, his great start to 2017 is precisely why he was named Halo HQ’s Week One Halo of the Week. However, tonight fans saw a slightly different version of Escobar. In his four at-bats, the infielder did not get on base a single time. This counteracts what he has done a lot of the rest of April. His batting average still sits at a cool .405, so there is frankly nothing to worry about. Esky has been lights out so far, so he gets a free pass for the lack of a better term. Tonight simply shows that Escobar is human. In the first eight matchups, Esky definitely did not always look like a mere human being.

The rubber match of the series is tomorrow afternoon. First pitch is set for 12:35. Right-hander Ricky Nolasco will toe the rubber for the Halos and make his third start of 2017.

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