ESPN released it’s annual Ultimate Standings today, ranking all 122 franchises in the four major pro sports using factors such as ownership, coaching, affordability, stadium experience, and players, among others, with the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning taking the top spot (the NHL was impressively represented, holding four of the top ten spots.)
Our Angels ranked 56th, mostly on the strength of Mike Trout and affordability in comparison to the rest of the Southern California market, ranking 41st overall in players and 37th overall in affordability, respectively.
They also somehow finished 33rd in title track, which accounts for championships won or expected within the lifetime of current fans. Ownership and Arte Moreno had the lowest score of any of the factors, ranking 80th, which most Angels fans would agree with.
Manager Mike Scioscia fell thirty two spots to 73rd, and it’s obvious where the blame for this poor season lies in the eyes of fans. The stadium experience and bang for the buck (which compares prices to on-field product and quality of concessions) both fell sharply, but fans generally will give poor grades all over when their team is coming off as bad of a season as the Angels are, and the high affordability score suggests fans may just be handing out low scores due to having a losing team.
The Angels finished behind other local teams like the Kings and Ducks, but still managed to finish ahead of the Dodgers(there’s a big win!), Clippers, Lakers, and Rams. The Angels still draw 3 million fans a season, but it’s obvious they’re headed in the wrong direction.
Overall, the Angels have fallen from 15th two years ago all the way to 56th this year, and although they still do a lot of things right as a franchise it’s obvious fans are becoming frustrated with the lack of winning. Winning a grand total of zero playoff games in seven years will do that, and it’s amazing how long it’s taken for the luster to begin to wear off what used to be a marquee franchise. The Angels need to turn things around quickly, because when the fall starts, the bottom can come quicker than you think.