Why? Because it can only get better
There are lots of reasons why Angels could still win
ANAHEIM -- The Angels have certainly gone out of their way to correct history. They've assumed a lethargic look. They've put themselves at the mercy of umpires. They've braved home-park boos.All to put themselves in a position to get themselves off the hook and remove the goat horns. To turn their usual pattern on its flip side. To ensure everlasting peace for Gene Mauch. Mauch, the legendary manager who passed away two months ago, was legendary principally for some of the biggest come-from-ahead losses in Major League championship history. Two of those came under the Halo: In 1982, the Angels were the first team to lose a five-game League Championship Series (to the Brewers) after winning the first two; in 1986, the Angels were the first to lose a seven-game LCS (to the Red Sox) after leading three games to one. So, Little General, this one will be for you. When the Angels get off the floor -- OK, off the morgue slab -- and turn around this AL Championship Series on the White Sox and leave U.S. Cellular Field on Wednesday night, the fingers pointing skyward will be pointing at you. Well, maybe we should make that "if" the Angels get up. It is hard to imagine a more one-sided ALCS through four games, as the White Sox have hit clutch and pitched without a glitch, and the Angels have played a Chumpionship Series. There has been no Monkey Business at Angel Stadium. But at the corner pool hall, this is what they would call a hustle. The Angels will now pull out their good cue, sprinkle powder on their hands and start running the table. Where do we get off even considering that possibility? What makes us think that this could be a setup? Why should the Angels and their fans feel there is any hope? Consider ... Chicago: North Side, South Side. It's still the same toddling town. The Cubs managed to squander the same edge two years ago, and the White Sox have always aspired to be just like them. The Angels just have to get out of Orange County alive. The White Sox had lost nine consecutive postseason games at home -- through three different ballparks -- since Game 1 of the 1959 World Series until Game 2 of this series. Do they think they're going to start a different streak now? Don Cooper, their pitching coach, would rather not plan on that. "We'll try to take care of it tomorrow," Cooper said. "These guys are a little wounded now -- and that's when an animal is most dangerous."
The Three Amigos: Chone Figgins, Garret Anderson and Vladimir Guerrero can't hold their peace any longer. Combined, they are 4-for-45 in this Series, with two RBIs and nine strikeouts. Trying to stop them when they get going will be like trying to stop a Hummer rolling downhill.Their hush has the White Sox trembling. "They have such good hitters," said Ozzie Guillen. "You never know what's going to happen. Hopefully it doesn't happen too soon. They know how to do it." They also have their own guys excited. Their Sunday pitcher's own word. "In mind you can only keep Guerrero down so long," said Paul Byrd, the Game 5 starter who will be the first to benefit from The Awakening. "We're excited about the possibility of him and some other players breaking out at any time."
Back from the Brink?
|Sixty-two teams in postseason history have found themselves in a 3-1 hole in a best-of-seven series. Only 10 of those teams have battled back to win the series.|
Team up 3-1
|2004 ALCS||New York||Boston|
|1996 NLCS||St. Louis||Atlanta|
|1985 World Series||St. Louis||Kansas City|
|1985 ALCS||Toronto||Kansas City|
|1979 World Series||Baltimore||Pittsburgh|
|1968 World Series||St. Louis||Detroit|
|1958 World Series||Milwaukee||New York (AL)|
|1925 World Series||Washington||Pittsburgh|
Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.