The Los Angeles Angels once again faced struggles at the plate, scoring just one run in their series-opening 2-1 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays. The Angels have scored just five runs in their last four outings, and are 1-3 in that span.
Angels interim manager Phil Nevin has been in charge of the team since June 7, and dating back to May 25, the Halos have the worst batting average in Major League Baseball. Nevin has oftentimes credited opposing teams’ gameplans rather than addressing the consistent struggles of the Angels.
And after Monday’s loss, in which their lone run came via a Mike Trout RBI single, Nevin continued that trend, according to Jeff Fletcher of The O.C. Register:
“They’re doing all their work,” Manager Phil Nevin said of the Angels’ struggling hitters. “The hitting (coaches) are doing all they can with everybody. They pitched us well tonight, as well. These guys are really good at game-planning and pitching to guys. We had a couple of matchups we liked and just didn’t our way.”
The Angels were not completely lost at the plate against the Rays, as they managed six hits and four walks. But they were 1-for-5 with runners in scoring position and 3-for-15 with a walk when runners were on base at all.
Failing to capitalize on those situations — especially behind a quality start from Tucker Davidson — is a massive missed opportunity. Davidson allowed just two earned runs in his five innings of work, and the bullpen combination of Aaron Loup, Ryan Tepera, and Andrew Wantz pitched three scoreless frames.
Only being able to push across one run despite having several chances to add to it shows that it may not be great pitching, but rather poor hitting. This has been known for quite some time, but the Angels have been unrelenting in their willingness to credit opposing pitchers.
This is not a slight to Rays starter Jeffrey Springs, who has been strong all season and had another solid outing on Monday. But after three months of being among the worst offenses in all of baseball, it has to become apparent that good pitching is not the reason for the Halos’ struggles.
Perry Minasian feels starting pitching has been improved
Despite the trade of Noah Syndergaard at the deadline, the Angels have statistically taken a leap from where they were in 2021 with regard to starting pitching. Angels general manager Perry Minasian feels that the team is absolutely improved in that department, mainly due to natural progression of young talents.