Angels midseason report: A look at the good and the bad

·5 min read
The Angels' Shohei Ohtani watches his RBI double during the seventh inning against the White Sox on June 28, 2022.
The Angels' Shohei Ohtani watches his RBI double on Tuesday. Last year's AL most valuable player has excelled at the plate and on the mound again the first half of this season. (Jae C. Hong / Associated Press)

Congratulations, Angels fans! You’ve made it to the official halfway point of the 2022 season.

It’s been a wild ride for all interested parties. The team reached heights unseen in years during the first six weeks of the season. Then it all came crashing down in a series of unfortunate events for the Angels, all against a backdrop of a whole lot of losing.

It’s a lot to take in, but we figured why not take a brief trip down memory lane and revisit the good and the bad.

Here are five Angels moments this season that made you all cheer … and five that you might or might not want to remember, starting with:

Angels pitcher Reid Detmers (48) celebrates with teammates after throwing a no-hitter against the Rays on May 10, 2022.
Angels pitcher Reid Detmers (48) celebrates with teammates after throwing a no-hitter against Tampa Bay on May 10. (Ashley Landis / Associated Press)

+1. Reid Detmers’ no-hitter (May 10)

The wins were stacking up, the energy was good and Detmers’ no-hitter against the Tampa Bay Rays made the Angels look invincible. Detmers, who had been erratic through his previous starts this season became the youngest pitcher in team history to throw a solo no-hitter.

+2. Jared Walsh hits for cycle (June 11)

The first baseman already got his single, then a double, then hit a home run. What were the odds he would get that triple against the National League-leading New York Mets? Apparently, very good. It did happen, of course.

+3. Shohei Ohtani has eight RBIs in a game, then strikes out 13 batters the next day (June 21 and 22)

If you knew nothing about Ohtani and needed a current summary of what he does, watching his highlight reel for these two games would tell you everything you need to know. He is baseball’s only active two-way player for a reason.

The Angels' Mike Trout is congratulated by Shohei Ohtani after hitting a solo home run June 24, 2022.
The Angels' Mike Trout is congratulated by Shohei Ohtani after Trout homered June 24 against the Mariners. (Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

+4. Mike Trout breaks record for most home runs hit against the Seattle Mariners (June 24)

Ask the Mariners who’s their daddy. They won’t say it, but everyone else is thinking it. It’s none other than Trout, who solidified his status as their biggest nemesis after hitting his 53rd home run against them — the most by any player against the Mariners.

+5. Brandon Marsh making a catch in left field

This is a revolving door. Marsh makes insane catches in left field almost nightly. His response when asked in June what his thought process is before making these impossible-looking grabs: “Ball, go. From Point A to Point B and stick the glove out. You've just got to trust your instincts, and hopefully your legs take you the right way.”

-1. David Fletcher has season-interrupting surgery (May 10)

When the Angels lost their starting shortstop, they also lost the bat that came with him. He didn’t have much chance to contribute in the early season, already marred by injury. The Angels now have Andrew Velazquez getting regular starts there, and he is an above-average shortstop. Yet during 70 games this season, Velazquez is batting .172 with a .492 on-base-plus-slugging percentage. In his first 70 games last season, Fletcher was hitting .289 with a .661 OPS.

Angels second baseman Jack Mayfield gets tied up with teammate Jo Adell after catching a fly ball June 8, 2022.
Angels second baseman Jack Mayfield gets tied up with teammate Jo Adell after catching a fly ball against Boston on June 8. The Angels fell 1-0 for their 14th straight loss. (Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)

-2. The 14-game losing streak (14th loss was June 8)

The Angels were almost tied with the American League West-leading Houston Astros. Then they lost a franchise-record 14 consecutive games and their chances at claiming the division or a wild-card spot suddenly were longshots.

-3. Anthony Rendon has season ending surgery (June 17)

The star third baseman was back from the injured list for all of four games before a dislocated tendon in his wrist derailed his second straight season with the Angels. The team has not been the same since, struggling to find a solid replacement for him at the hot corner and plate. Replacing Rendon’s bat and defensive contributions is a tall task.

Players and coaches on the Angels and Mariners fight during a benches-clearing brawl in the second inning June 26, 2022.
Players and coaches on the Angels and Mariners fight during a benches-clearing brawl in the second inning at Angel Stadium on June 26. (Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

-4. Brawl with Mariners (June 26) results in nine Angels suspensions and Archie Bradley going on IL

The Angels got into a fistfight with the Mariners and have been paying for it since. Interim manager Phil Nevin won’t return from his suspension until July 9. They're already taxed in the bullpen and lost a key reliever when Bradley fractured his elbow falling over the dugout railing during that brawl. His timeline to return could be months.

-5. Firing manager Joe Maddon (June 7)

OK, so this isn’t really a good or bad thing. Not yet, at least. Maddon was a beloved coach in the Angels clubhouse, fired in the middle of the 14-game losing streak. Some players blamed themselves for Maddon’s firing. Nevin called his own promotion from third base coach to interim manager bittersweet. Time will tell whether letting him go was the right move.

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.

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