January 2007

FutureAngels.com Radio Episode 2

Episode 2 of FutureAngels.com Radio is now available on TPSRadio.net. In this show, we join Angels minor league coaches at the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes’ annual Youth Baseball Clinic, chat with Orem Owlz owner Jeff Katofsky, and listen to Angels General Manager Bill Stoneman as he addresses the Quakes’ annual Hot Stove Banquet.

What a Tangled Web They Weave

On January 14 I posted an article titled, “Baseball and Blogs.” Among other subjects, I wrote about how major league baseball organizations continue to give near-monopolistic preference to mainstream media such as newspapers while ignoring, if not disdaining, Web sites and blogs.

I noted that, with subscriptions declining, newspapers are struggling to find a way to survive in the Internet era, somehow trying to find a balance between electronic and print media while those of us who’ve been on the Web all along are still treated as if we don’t exist — or, even worse, as a threat.

Which is why I was quite amused by an article in the Business section of today’s Los Angeles Times.

“The Times Shifts Its Focus to Web” was the article’s title.

I encourage you to read the entire article, but here are the most interesting excepts:

Los Angeles Times Editor James E. O’Shea unveiled a major initiative Wednesday to combine operations of the newspaper and its Internet site — a change he said was crucial to ensuring that The Times remains a premier news outlet.

O’Shea employed dire statistics on declining print advertising revenue to urge The Times’ 940 journalists to throw off a "bunker mentality" and view latimes.com as the paper’s primary vehicle for delivering news.

In his first significant action since becoming editor in mid-November, O’Shea said he would create the position of editor for innovation and launch a crash course for journalists to push ahead the melding of the newspaper and its website.

O’Shea named Business Editor Russ Stanton to the innovation post and said the "Internet 101" course would teach reporters, editors and photographers to become "savvy multimedia journalists," able to enhance their writing with audio and video reports. He emphasized the need for speed in reforming an operation that he called "woefully behind" the competition.

Forgive me for laughing.

FutureAngels.com is part of that competition they’re "woefully behind." I’ve been posting audio interviews since 1999, and video highlight clips since 2002. Not to mention doing all the photos too, this blog I started three months ago, and the podcast that debuted last week.

And that’s just me. Alone.

Despite all that, I and other Web sites are treated by major league teams’ Media Relations as non-entities or threats to the established order. Yet here’s the Times trying to train their scribes to be not just reporters, but also how to file audio and video files.

You can bet the Angels Media Relations will make sure to help the Times try to file their webcasts, while those of us who’ve been doing it for years will continue to be shunned.

It just drips with irony.

Don’t get me wrong. I applaud O’Shea for making a bold move to take the Times into the 21st Century. I hope he turns around the paper. The reporting is light-years beyond the Orange County Register. But at the same time, it seems to be a tacit admission that FutureAngels.com and other Web sites have been on the right track all these years. Yet Major League Baseball continues to shun us.

Anyway, I recommend you read the article, and the entire text of O’Shea’s address to the Times staff.

This article is copyright © 2007 Wordsmith Resources and FutureAngels.com. It may not be used elsewhere without the prior expressed written permission of the author.

McPherson Opts for Surgery

MLB.com’s Mike Scarr reports that Dallas McPherson will undergo surgery on January 23 to remove a disk in his lower back and repair a fractured vertebra. The early estimate is that he’s out at least six months.

Good luck, big guy.

Dallas gave me my most memorable moment in all the years I’ve been covering the Angels minor leagues.

July 15, 2003 … The Arizona Diamondbacks assign Randy Johnson on rehab to Lancaster, which is on the road at Rancho Cucamonga. Dallas McPherson homers in his second at-bat against Johnson, then singles in the third at-bat. In his final at-bat, Johnson nicks Dallas with a brushback pitch. Dallas retaliates by stealing second base.

Johnson rarely gives up home runs to left-handed batters, so McPherson’s achievement was all the more memorable.

If you have a broadband connection and Windows Media Player, click here to watch McPherson’s at-bats against Johnson.

This article is copyright © 2007 Wordsmith Resources and FutureAngels.com. It may not be used elsewhere without the prior expressed written permission of the author.

Brandon Wood vs. Mike Schmidt

I’ve nothing against stats, but I do have something against people who abuse stats.

Most of you have heard of sabermetrics. As defined by Wikipedia, sabermetrics is “analysis of baseball through objective evidence, especially baseball statistics.”

Which is fine and dandy.

Based on the posts written by some “statheads” I read at various sites on the Internet, although they claim to be “objective” they often abuse the use of statistics, selecting only stats that prove their point while ignoring others that disprove their opinion. They often fail to evaluate stats in context, and seem to have never heard about a basic of statistical analysis, namely the validity of your population sample.

A few even go to the extreme of treating certain stathead assumptions as dogma, which is why I refer to their belonging to “The Church of Sabermetrics.” Some people think they see the Virgin Mary in a piece of garlic bread. I wouldn’t be surprised if these people thought they saw Bill James in a ballpark hotdog.

One recent example I’ve read on a couple sites is certain statheads dismissing Brandon Wood as a prospect.

Never mind that Wood at age 21 had one of the best seasons in the Double-A Texas League last year, and was named by Baseball America as the #2 prospect in that league behind Alex Gordon. Never mind that he was fifth in homers (25), second in doubles (42), third in slugging percentage (.552) and first extra-base hits (71) despite missing the final month of the season to go play for Team USA.

No, Brandon Wood must be dismissed because he struck out a lot.

Apparently this is one of the mortal sins in the Church of Sabermetrics, along with not taking a lot of walks.

So I decided to look at the minor league career of Hall of Famer Mike Schmidt, a prolific whiffer in his own right, to see how he compared to Wood.

While Wood was drafted and signed out of high school, Schmidt was selected by the Phillies after graduating from Ohio University. Taken in the second round of the 1971 draft, he was a couple months short of his 22nd birthday when he reported to Double-A Reading to begin his career. In 74 games, Schmidt had an AVG/OBP/SLG of .211/.302/.350 (.652 OPS) in 268 TPA. Since we’re talking strikeouts, Schmidt struck out at a rate of once every 4.06 plate appearances (4.06:1). Schmidt was a shortstop that first year, just as he was in college.

In 1972, Schmidt played the entire minor league season at Triple-A Eugene. In 131 games, he posted a line of .291/.409/.550 (.960 OPS) in 528 TPA. His TPA:SO ratio was 3.64:1. Interestingly, the Phillies moved him all around the infield that summer — 76 games at 2B, 52 games at 3B and five games as SS.

The Phillies called him up to the big league at season’s end, with only 40 plate appearances. His TPA:SO ratio in that limited audition was 2.67:1.

At age 23 1/2, Schmidt began his first full major league career in 1973 that finished 71-91 and had one of the lesser offenses in the National League. Schmidt posted a line of .196/.324/.373 (.697 OPS) in 442 TPA. His TPA:SO ratio was 3.25:1.

If sabermetrics had been around then, I’m sure some of its most devout believers would have dimissed Schmidt as a “bust,” “flop,” and “dud” — all words I’ve seen used by some people to dismiss Wood.

Schmidt continued to whiff with quite some regularity for many years, but it didn’t affect his productivity.

Over his first five seasons, his OPS were .697, .941, .890, .900 and .967. In those same five years, his TPA:SO ratios were 3.25, 4.97, 3.74, 4.73 and 5.47.

Over time, Schmidt learned to reduce his strikeouts, but he was also taking a lot more walks. Because he became one of the most feared hitters of his time, pitchers walked him a lot more. In fact, in his second through fifth full seasons, he both struck out and walked over 100 times each. In 1975, for example, he struck out 180 times but walked 101 times.

Now let’s look at Wood’s career.

As noted, Brandon signed out of high school so he’s been playing pro ball full time at an age Schmidt was playing in college. Pro experience is far more valuable but college is nowhere near the quality of professional minor league baseball.

In any case, Wood was 21 last year when he played Double-A, the level at which Schmidt began his career. Roughly speaking, Wood was a few months younger. At the same age and level, Wood posted a .907 OPS while Schmidt posted a .652 OPS. Now, those are different leagues and ballparks separated by 34 years, so it’s foolish to draw too close a comparison.

Of more importance is to look at Wood’s TPA:SO trend, which is our subject of discussion.

Wood’s TPA:SO ratios by year and level:

  • 2003 Provo 3.77 (181 TPA; .823 OPS
  • 2004 Cedar Rapids 4.54 (531 TPA; .726 OPS)
  • 2005 Rancho Cucamonga 4.63 (593 TPA; 1.054 OPS)
  • 2006 Arkansas 3.50 (521 TPA; .907 OPS)

Looking at Schmidt’s strikeout rates in his early years, they were far uglier than what Wood has done so far, but other than his freshman year in the majors he was productive enough that the strikeouts really didn’t matter.

The Angels’ offense is based on what I’ve called “Contactball,” meaning that they like to put runners in motion and the ball in play. Walks are nice, but a walk doesn’t advance a runner unless there’s a force. So the Angels tend to stockpile prospects who might have relatively low walk rates but who also don’t strike out a lot.

If Wood’s power numbers continue to trend parallel to Schmidt’s, it might not be “Contactball” but it also won’t matter.

So it turns out that, in the case of at least one Hall of Famer, strikeouts just weren’t that big a deal. Productivity is the bottom line, and the bottom line is that Wood so far has been quite productive. He’s been one of the youngest players in his leagues the last two seasons, and at age 22 will be one of the youngest in Triple-A this year. He’ll face plenty of pitchers with prior major league experience. The high strikeout rate will probably continue, but in hitter-friendly Franklin Covey Field expect his power numbers to explode. The PCL has plenty other hitter-friendly parks — Colorado Springs, Albuquerque, Las Vegas and Tucson are the main culprits — so in analyzing Wood’s progress this year it will be important to factor out his numbers in those ballparks.

But don’t obsess about the strikeouts. They’re just growing pains. Ask Mike Schmidt.

This article is copyright © 2007 Wordsmith Resources and FutureAngels.com. It may not be used elsewhere without the prior expressed written permission of the author.

McPherson: Surgery Likely

In an update to his story posted last night on the Los Angeles Times web site, beat writer Mike DiGiovanna quotes Dallas McPherson in today’s print edition as saying that surgery is looking more likely for him

"It’s beyond baseball — it’s getting to the point where it affects your daily life," said McPherson, who will be examined by an orthopedic spine specialist Monday in Dallas. "Just getting out of bed, tying my shoes, putting on my pants, is painful."

What a shame.

I’ve always felt that a prospect should succeed or fail on the field based on his abilities. How unfair that his opportunity is taken away by a freak injury.

Maybe the surgery will solve the problem, but the Angels can’t wait any longer. They let Troy Glaus leave as a free agent after the 2004 season. It was the right call, because they had a talented and affordable replacement in McPherson. No one could have foreseen the back injuries that have plagued Dallas since.

So it’s time to move on.

Barring further moves or other unforseen events, if it were my call I’d have Brandon Wood move to third base for 2007. He’ll be at Triple-A Salt Lake as planned, but it’s time to start learning the Hot Corner.

Ever since I first saw Wood play at Provo in 2003, I’ve compared him to Cal Ripken Jr., and the comparison remains. Ripken switched between third base and shortstop during his career, and the same may now happen with Wood.

That doesn’t mean Brandon should be rushed. Wood will be a 22-year old in Triple-A this year, one of the youngest players at that level. He struck out once every 3.5 plate appearances in 2006, compared to 4.6 at High-A in 2005. That’s more an indication of a very young player facing more experienced pitching than a concern about his ability, and he’ll get more of the same in Triple-A where he’ll see many pitchers who have prior major league experience.

The Angels should leave Wood at Triple-A until September. It’ll be either Chone Figgins or Robb Quinlan at 3B in Anaheim this year. With Juan Rivera already injured due to a broken leg, the Angels’ offense will suffer further, but unless something unforeseen happens (e.g. the Orioles’ Miguel Tejada is suddenly available) the Angels will have to make do.

If anything happens to Orlando Cabrera at shortstop, Maicer Izturis is the first candidate, but Erick Aybar is right behind him and should return to Salt Lake to start 2007. Next in line would be Sean Rodriguez, whose bat awoke last year in a season split between High-A Rancho Cucamonga and Double-A Arkansas.

I’ll be pulling for Dallas to finally get healthy after this surgery, but the Angels have to go to Plan B.

This article is copyright © 2007 Wordsmith Resources and FutureAngels.com. It may not be used elsewhere without the prior expressed written permission of the author.

Another Setback for Dallas McPherson

Los Angeles Times beat writer Mike DiGiovanna reports that Dallas McPherson will see an orthopedic spine specialist Monday in Dallas, after experiencing more back discomfort.

DiGiovanna quoted Angels GM Bill Stoneman as describing Dallas’ pain as "a big concern," suggesting that further surgery might be required.

Stoneman told the Angels Booster Club on January 8 that McPherson would be auditioned during spring training to lessen the strain on his back.

Now McPherson’s status seems all the more uncertain.

Will the Angels move Brandon Wood to third base to start the 2007 season at Triple-A Salt Lake? That would seem to be the logical consequence. It might also suggest that the Angels are more likely to keep Erick Aybar as the potential future replacement for Orlando Cabrera at shortstop, who will be a free agent after the 2008 season. Maicer Izturis is still in the mix, of course.

Finding the silver lining in the dark cloud, DiGiovanna reported that Casey Kotchman was healthy and strong after his stint in Puerto Rico, so he seems likely to reclaim his first base post in spring training.

I’ll be at Rancho Cucamonga in the morning for their annual youth baseball clinic. Expect a report in the next FutureAngels.com Radio podcast.

This article is copyright © 2007 Wordsmith Resources and FutureAngels.com. It may not be used elsewhere without the prior expressed written permission of the author.

FutureAngels.com Radio Debuts

A new FutureAngels.com feature premiered today.

FutureAngels.com Radio isn’t really on the radio. It’s a podcast. But what the heck, Major League Baseball calls its webcasts "MLB Radio," so the precedent has been set.

You’ll find the podcast on TSP Radio, which isn’t radio either, but a site that hosts sports podcasters with the hopes of creating their own web-based sports network.

To listen to FutureAngels.com radio, go to podcast.tpsradio.net and click on the FutureAngels.com Radio link in the left column.

The guests on the first show are former Angels broadcaster Mario Impemba, recently acquired Angels reliever Chris Resop, and Rancho Cucamonga Quakes general manager Gerry McKearney. You’ll also hear highlight clips, and once we get into the season I’ll weave in news, analysis and plenty of Angels minor league history.

This article is copyright © 2007 Wordsmith Resources and FutureAngels.com. It may not be used elsewhere without the prior expressed written permission of the author.

Baseball and Blogs

Bucco Blog is another blog on MLBlogs.com, run by a Pittsburgh Pirates fan who calls himself “Joliet Jake.” It’s one of the more active blogs on MLBlogs.com; according to StrikeTwo.net, it’s #16 on the list of “influential” blogs, ranked by TrackBacks.

(Note: The FutureAngels.com Blog hasn’t used TrackBacks, but I’m going to start doing so just to see whether it matters.)

Jake posted an entry on January 12 titled, Memo to Pirates Front Office: Bloggers Exist. Essentially he raised the question of how seriously professional baseball organizations should treat bloggers in their media relations.

In a subsequent column, Jake wrote that he’d received many e-mails from fellow bloggers (I was one of them) sharing their experiences with the organizations they cover.

Overall, their experiences have been a mixed bag, although it seems in general that they’re blown off far more often than they’re treated with credibility, much less respect.

FutureAngels.com began in April 1999, having evolved out of a hybird Angels/Lake Elsinore Storm site I ran for a year in 1998. This will be the tenth year I’ve been around.  I’ve had a lot of experience at this stuff, so I wanted to add my own insights.

First, I can fully understand why the Media Relations people would ignore bloggers, or even feel threatened by them. Quite frankly, most blogs are just clueless rants by people who refuse to exert any effort towards educating themselves about the game. It’s so easy to hide behind a modem and use a fictitious name to rail at the perceived injustices of the world. To equate those people with so-called “mainstream media” performing a legitimate journalistic function would be ridiculous.

On the other hand, there are plenty writers in the “mainstream” world whose work isn’t much better than the bloggers. One example is Los Angeles Times scribe T.J. Simers, whose schtick is to write insulting cheapshots about those caught in his crosshairs. I’ve heard plenty of sportswriters and local sports talk hosts insist that Simers is actually a nice guy and a talented writer, and his column is simply a gimmick in the tradition of the late KMPC radio pundit Jim Healy. Making a living by inflicting pain on others is rather dishonorable, in my opinion, even if it’s in jest, but the fact of the matter is that Simers can get the Angels or Dodgers Media Relations people to set up interviews for him, whereas most bloggers can’t.

So why are newspaper columnists who have no interest in writing the truth given carte blanche access to the organization, while bloggers are not?

The obvious answer is that hundreds of thousands of people will read the beat writer, where no more than a couple hundred people might read the blogger.

So it isn’t really the quality of the work, the message, or the credibility of the writer. It’s the consequence of barring the writer, the bad publicity printed in a globally circulated newspaper.

In short, it’s what political consultants call “feed the beast” — if you throw the lion some meat every day, maybe he won’t come to devour you.

Bloggers in comparison are just kittens. At worst, they cough up a hairball.

Nonetheless, bloggers and webmasters have scored some serious news stories. I think that’s what scares the baseball folk. If you throw the lion some meat every day, you hope you’ve trained it to realize that eating you is a bad idea because then there won’t be any more free meals. Most bloggers prefer to operate outside the mainstream. They like the “outlaw” nature of their work. Some even brag that their work is more “pure” because it isn’t supposedly tainted by commingling with alleged spinmeisters.

But many bloggers are sincere about wanting to practice as serious journalists, and seek out the team’s Media Relations in an effort to do it by the book, thinking that if you act mainstream, you’ll be treated as mainstream.

Probably the best example in the baseball world is Jamey Newberg at The Newberg Report, who covers the Texas Rangers. Jamey started in 1998, the same year I did. We were both members of the Baseball America On-Line program, the notion being that BA would exploit the nascent fan web site phenomenon in the late 1990s to use them as the cyber equivalent of the newspaper stringer. Eventually BA evolved its Web presence to the point they didn’t need the affiliates, although many of those affiliates were actually bought out by commercial entities so the project died an early death, Jamey and I being two of the few survivors.

Jamey’s relationship with the Rangers is exceptionally positive. He has just as much access as any beat writer for a mainstream publication. The Rangers front office embraced him and established a positive working relationship. But Jamey has evolved into a commercial enterprise, publishing an annual book on the Rangers, whereas I’m just running FutureAngels.com out of my own pocket, hoping to sell enough photos to cover expenses. Jamey is an affluent attorney. I’m a computer programmer who started a site to archive Angels minor league history.

My experiences with the Angels over the years have run the gamut. In the early years, before owners voted to transfer their Internet rights to MLB, the Angels had their own site and I was invited to a couple meetings about helping their site. That changed after the owners’ vote, but I still contributed here and there. My photos were used in the Angels annual media guide, and I wrote articles for the souvenir game program sold at Angel Stadium.

Recently the attitude has changed, although it’s not just towards me. People such as boosters and host parents have been accused of leaking confidential information to the media. I’ve never done so, because that’s not my thing. I’m an archivist, or the reasonable approximation thereof. But I’ve been told that certain employees have been threatened with disciplinary action if they’re caught talking to me, members of the mainstream media, boosters, or anyone else not on the Angels payroll.

A few years ago, I was told by an Angels employee that they didn’t know what to do with me. Clearly I’d established legitimate credentials, but because I wasn’t a team employee or an employee of recognized media they didn’t know how I should be treated.

“We don’t know how to categorize you,” I was told. “Are you the media? Are you a fan?”

“Why do I need to be categorized?” I replied. I’d been around enough years to demonstrate I wasn’t trying to get autographs or a scoop. I was a service, one that cost me a couple thousand dollars each year out of my own pocket. There were many random acts of kindness I performed that the brass never knew about, such as giving a player a ride or picking up a player at the airport or feeding the young Latin players or sending photos for free to the rookie players at the summer league camp every year. Those people were always grateful and remembered the generosity, although I’m sure the brass wouldn’t have seen it that way.

“The problem is that we can’t control you,” I was told, and in the end that’s the crux of the issue.

The interesting implication in that remark was that they believe they can control the mainstream media — the “feed the beast” syndrome.

But when someone is motivated by more noble intentions, such as a fan with a web site or a host parent housing a minor leaguer, it’s not about being tossed red meat. It’s about doing a good deed.

Certainly, not all bloggers are so nobly intended. Nor are all fans. Even the occasional host parent has had more selfish motivations.

And some bloggers have demonstrated they can be bought off. One Angels fan who criticized the change of the team’s name from “Anaheim Angels” to “Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim” sang a different tune after the team arranged for him to be interviewed by local press as an example of a fan happy with the name change. In short, he allowed himself to be controlled in exchange for fifteen minutes of fame.

As I hear more and more stories about boosters, host parents and others being the target of paranoid accusations, the more importance I give to that explanation — “We can’t control you.”

As fans, we tend to forget that professional baseball is a business with billions of dollars at stake. The more money at stake, the more fearful front offices become of taking a risk.

Ironically, it seems that with the rare exception of the Rangers and Jamey Newberg, teams have failed so far to figure out they should apply the “feed the beast” metaphor to the bloggers and the Web in general. Why not set up a separate mechanism for those bloggers who wish to perform a legitimate journalistic function and allow them to participate in events separate from the mainstream media? Since few (if any) of them have had training in proper journalistic etiquette, establish a protocol for behavior, perhaps even a signed agreement.  If they demonstrate responsible behavior, let them participate in the mainstream events, such as I did with teleconferences over the years.  If the cyberjournalist violates the agreement, pull the plug.

If the agreement is too odious, e.g. “Write only nice things about us,” the blogger has the option of not signing it.  I wouldn’t. And as I wrote above, some bloggers revel in their outlaw attitude, and will reject such an agreement outright.

Nor is it the responsibility of bloggers, host parents, fans, or even mainstream journalists to cover their eyes and ears should they stumble across something confidential. Put the blame where it belongs. Train players and other personnel in appropriate public behavior. Host parents have a certain responsibility because they see the players in private. But it’s silly to accuse someone of being a media spy just because he’s in a privileged position. Of course, if the players didn’t misbehave, then there wouldn’t be a problem, would there?

Personally, I’ve always been careful about confidential matters. For example, a few years ago I was filming players during batting practice. A coach started discussing signs. I turned the camera off and walked away. I wasn’t asked to. I just did. Because I didn’t want to be in a situation where I could be falsely accused.  Where appropriate, I’ve always asked permission, although there have been times where someone got angry because I shot photos or video of something that was obviously public.

Recently there was a dust-up on the MLB Angels bulletin board about Tom and Casey Kotchman. Some of the usual wingnuts were claiming Casey was still ill and would never play again. I said he was going to play in Puerto Rico in November. I didn’t get that from any confidential source; it was from an interview Casey gave to MLB.com in September. Then someone posted claiming to be Tom Kotchman. I challenged that person to answer a few basic questions I’d pose about Tom from my interviews with him over the years. That person disappeared. It wasn’t that I had any personal link to the Kotchmans, it was just that I figured I could call the bluff.

All the while, though, I was worried someone might misinterpret this as my trading in sensitive and confidential information. Which is a shame, because then the fraudulent people win. Media Relations may not care about what’s said on the Angels board, but it’s a fact that the beat writers do read it, and do publish excerpts from the board, regardless of their accuracy.  That’s true across baseball fandom; the Pittsburgh paper quotes Bucco Blog, and many publications quote The Newberg Report web site.

The so-called mainstream media is turning more and more to the Internet, for many reasons. One is it’s a lot easier to get “the voice of the fan” by sifting through a few rants on a bulletin board than it is to get out from behind the computer and talk to people. It’s not necessarily laziness, it’s a result of the ever-dwindling staff at newspapers with declining subscriptions.

Both the Times and the Register have gone through significant layoffs in the last year, with more rumored to come. The Times has been experimenting with mixing both their print and Web services, hoping that somehow they can attract more revenue by selling ads on popular web pages.

Personally, I’d pay to read certain writers, but not others. With most bloggers, though, you don’t pay a penny to read them. So if you’re a fan looking to read about Angels baseball, given a choice between paying to read Mike DiGiovanna or Bill Shaikin, or reading some blogger’s uninformed rant for free, most folk will go with Option B.

The reality is that a world looking for information is turning more and more to the Internet. That means more bloggers will be read, whether they’re accurate or not. If the ballclubs’ Media Relations stick their collective heads in the sand and continue to ignore this trend, feeding the red meat to a dying breed, then they shouldn’t be surprised when bad publicity is the result.

This article is copyright © 2007 Wordsmith Resources and FutureAngels.com. It may not be used elsewhere without the prior expressed written permission of the author.

Chris Resop Interview

Chris Resop was acquired by the Angels from Florida on November 20 in exchange for Kevin Gregg. I recorded an interview with him today. Click Here to listen.

Chris pitched in high school, and played in regional tournaments with current Angels prospects Casey Kotchman, Jeff Mathis and Bobby Wilson. The Marlins drafted him as an outfielder in June 2001, but in the summer of 2003 decided to convert him back to the mound.

Three years later, he’s had a couple brief tours in the majors with Florida. Chris said his velocity is now consistently in the mid-90s. He has a slider, curve and changeup in his repertoire.

Listen to the interview for lots more about Chris.

This article is copyright © 2007 Wordsmith Resources and FutureAngels.com. It may not be used elsewhere without the prior expressed written permission of the author.

Bill Stoneman Addresses Angels Booster Club

General Manager Bill Stoneman addressed the Angels Booster Club last night, along with Vice-President of Communications Tim Mead.

Click Here to watch the video version. Windows Media Player and a broadband Internet connection required.

Click Here to listen to the audio version. Windows Media Player required.

This article is copyright © 2007 Wordsmith Resources and FutureAngels.com. It may not be used elsewhere without the prior expressed written permission of the author.