The Los Angeles Angels will face the Chicago White Sox in the season’s first ESPN Sunday Night Baseball game.
ESPN has released their first half of Sunday night baseball games for the 2021 season. Unsurprisingly, a Los Angeles team opens up its schedule against a Chicago team. To everyone’s surprise, it’s the White Sox and Angels.
This should be set up to be a very entertaining first Sunday Night game. The Angels just missed the wild card spot of Astros Town three matches in the 2020 campaign. The White Sox were bounced in the first round to Oakland after going 35-25 of the year. This will be a story about two teams that can very well take responsible for their divisions in 2021 and given the talent they already have.
For the angels, this is a great opportunity. If they are able to pick up another jar or two, they may be in a real place to compete for AL West and put the world on guard early. Unless something happens between then and now, they should be in full force, come April 4 and be able to show the world that they are real. If they do not make more moves, it will be the same old story that they need more pitching.
Los Angeles struggled last year primarily due to pitching. They finished ninth in races scored with 294 and gave up 297 earned races which was the fourth worst in baseball. Angels also finished 12th in the PPP and 10th in the home race. This was probably a playoff team if they had anyone besides Dylan Bundy who was consistent every five days.
The White Sox are loaded with young talent and a new manager with a resume to win in Tony LaRussa. The power trio of Eloy Jimenez, Luis Robert, and reigning American League MVP Jose Abreu will be a tough battle for the Angels, but hopefully there will be a new ace in Los Angeles ready for the challenge.
The angels are likely to face the rising star, Lucas Giolito who had nearly 100 strikes through 72 innings and added a no-hitter to his resume last year. The unfortunate thing about this for Giolito is that the angels are not the pirates. Angels lineup consisting mainly of Mike the trout, Anthony rendon, and Shohei Ohtani will be a tough task to deal with for Giolito or anyone LaRussa decides to post there.
The biggest question for the angels on April 4 will be who they decide to throw out on the mound. Will it be a free agent like Trevor Bauer? Can they trade for Blake Snell who has been reported Ray’s trades? Or could it be last year’s surprising ace Dylan bundy who achieved a 6-3 record over 11 starts and a career-best 2.95 FIP and 3.29 ERA? Maybe it will be someone we do not expect. That question will probably be answered by the time screws and the catch report in February.
While this is a team sport, Mike Trout on national television is good for baseball. Given Angels In recent games, many baseball fans on the East Coast do not get to see trout as often. He is a player with five tools and without a doubt the best in the game. The angels must earn to be broadcast nationally, but this may be the year they do just that. It really only comes down to what the front office puts around it. It has been a good offseason so far for Halo, but there is still a lot of work to do.