The Cleveland Indians are staying out west to start the week with a three-game series against the Los Angeles Angels.
Indians fans are no stranger to seeing their team take on the Angels.
However, the club that plays right near Disneyland remains one of the most intriguing teams in the game.
Let’s look a few storylines to keep an eye on during the series.
Wasting the Prime of Superstars
— MLB Stats (@MLBStats) May 17, 2021
Not to mention, Ohtani is also scheduled to pitch Wednesday.
But the Angels enter the day with a 17-22 record.
That nearly has the team in the basement of the American League West division.
The last-place Texas Rangers actually have more wins, but also two more losses.
The problem here is that MLB fans only get to see a true generational like Trout in the regular season.
His Angels have made the playoffs once in his career.
The final result was being swept out in the ALDS.
Since then, the team keeps spending money only to finish below the .500 mark.
That is right, this team with so many stars has not even had a winning record since 2014.
So Trout may hit a long home run and Ohtani may dominate both ways, but if it doesn’t result in wins then none of that matters in the end.
The 2021 Results So Far
The Angels enter this series rocking a minus-47 run-differential on the year.
That is the second-worst mark in the American League only ahead of the Detroit Tigers.
The pitching staff has been getting shelled and that bodes well for an Indians offense seeking some help.
Los Angeles has even scored 20 more runs than Cleveland this season.
However, that staff has allowed 220 runs while the Indians are at 143.
Highlight-reel at-bats mean nothing if the pitching staff can’t limit the runs.
For reference, Dylan Bundy leads the Angels with eight starts.
He is rocking a 6.02 ERA.
Ohtani is the only starter doing anything and he remains on a bit of an innings limit.
The Pujols Debacle
Albert Pujols said he never demanded to play everyday with #Angels
— David Vassegh (@THEREAL_DV) May 17, 2021
This series was supposed to be a chance to see Albert Pujols in his farewell season.
But the Angels decided to cut ties with the slugger in an ugly manner and he is now with the Los Angeles Dodgers.
His tenure in town sums up the recent history of the club.
Money is spent on big names, only for wins to remain elusive.
Pujols being in the lineup would have been good for Indians pitchers given his steady state of decline that led to his release.
All this Angels criticism is fair, but the Indians still have to show up and prove it to be true.