Does the 2013 Angels story sound familiar yet?
Big splash in free agency this past offseason: Check.
High expectations entering the season: Check.
Brutal start to the season: Check.
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In fact, through Monday's action (4-9 through 13 games), the Angels were off to the exact same start as last season. Counting Tuesday's loss in Minnesota they've actually fallen behind the pace by a game, but it's still awfully similar.
Those 2012 Angels sputtered out to a 7-15 start and were actually 18-25 before things started clicking. From there, they were among the best teams in baseball and finished 89-73. It wasn't good enough to make the playoffs, though, so the season was a major disappointment -- and it easily could be attributed to the awful start.
And yet here they are again. Only there are a few differences this time around. For example, last year they had a healthy Jered Weaver atop their rotation. Now they don't for at least another month.
They also brought a kid up from the minors about a month into last season who hit .326/.399/.564 with 27 doubles, eight triples, 30 homers and 49 steals. Is that gonna happen again?
And Albert Pujols is hobbling around so badly he can barely play the field.
I have no doubt Pujols, Josh Hamilton and the aforementioned -- if not by name -- Mike Trout will get hot for stretches. I have no doubt Weaver will return to the hill as the ace he has been. But I have serious doubts about the rest of the team -- especially the pitching -- and I think the Angels should be very worried that history is repeating itself.
Please feel free to contact me with comments either on Twitter (@MattSnyder27) or via email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Remember, the rankings below aren't the standings. We have a standings page if that's your thing. These are a subjective rank of how I'd order the best team to the worst team in baseball right now. The overriding criterion when deciding between two teams is which I'd predict to win a seven-game series starting today. Definitely feel free to disagree.
These were posted the morning of Wednesday, April 17. Any action coming after posting wasn't included here.