Letters to Sports: Angels’ fall stems from a familiar failing

Angels pitcher Shohei Ohtani reacts to a play during the third inning of a game against the Yankees on Thursday in New York.
(Adam Hunger / Associated Press)

So what’s happened to the Angels? Come now, it’s really no surprise; it’s called “regression to the mean.” A mediocre bullpen staff overperforming began the retreat to mediocrity by underperforming.

Mediocre Angels executive management has for years consistently undervalued the necessity of a strong, power-pitching bullpen, instead somehow believing that “different looks” can solve the problem. One suspects Joe Maddon knows he hasn’t been provided a full deck.

Kip Dellinger
Santa Monica



As expected, the honeymoon the Angels have been on is over and real life has begun to kick in. Their pitching, which seemed acceptable at the beginning, has started to revert to the same old Angels problem of past years. Mediocre to poor performances have been commonplace for the starting rotation and bullpen. The Angels, unlike the Dodgers, will make no helpful changes during this year and will gradually fall out of playoff contention and end up as a third- or fourth-place team again. Another year to feel bad for Mike Trout.

Bruce Olson

Angels’ Mike Trout refused to let himself get dragged by the comments from Cincinnati Reds’ Tommy Pham said about him being the ‘worst commissioner of fantasy sports.’

June 1, 2022


Mike Trout is quoted saying “you know, we’re just going through a little skid right now.” Mike, what you’re going through right now is the inevitable spiral to the depths of irrelevance in the American League playoff picture. Thank you to the Angels for providing a few weeks of entertainment and hope for a chance to enjoy a possible playoff season. Maybe next year!

Ed Barstow


Is it true that if the Angels continue to lose, instead of Long Beach, they will be moving to Irwindale or Palmdale?

Fred Wallin
Westlake Village

Shohei Ohtani’s second career start at Yankee Stadium was nearly as bad as his first. Angels manager Joe Maddon thinks he might have been tipping pitches.

June 2, 2022

A day to remember

Congratulations to the teams that made it to the City high school baseball finals. Also to L.A. Unified for doing the absolute right thing in approving a relatively small amount of money to restore this great tradition of playing in Dodger Stadium. After two years of COVID-related hurdles for the schools and kids, it was great to see the board come through and give these players and their families something they will remember all their lives.

Jeff Heister

Lakers trouble

Bill Plaschke, your title of “the most negative sportswriter on the planet” is secure. Your Hail Mary choice (Doc Rivers) was not the guy the Lakers hired. So, you have placed your marker down. If the Lakers don’t win it all next year you can shout, “I told you so.” Your dump on Westbrook and snide remark on who really is the Lakers coach should really bring the team together. Your comment on Anthony Davis’ character and not his contributions should solidify the team spirit. You did sign off wishing the Lakers good luck, after saying they “are such a mess.” And writing “Darvin Who? Whoever he is, we wish him luck.” Perhaps wishing them success might have been a more positive signoff.

Joe Rouzan
Los Angeles



Imagine my surprise at the headline — “At NBA Finals, Lakers widely seen as winners” — over the article praising the hiring of new coach Darvin Ham. I imagine the Celtics and Warriors are truly envious of the 11th place Lakers (33-49) while they are contesting the championship series.

This is yet another example of the wildly (delusional?) hometown partisanship of Times sports ‘coverage.’ Yes, indeed, with their big-top roster of the frequently injured, over-the-hill gang, the Lakers are no doubt the envy of the entire league. Yes, indeed, bring on the clowns!

Ralph Martinez

LeBron James is in the billionaires’ club, according to Forbes, which pegs the Lakers star’s net worth at $1 billion.

June 2, 2022


Now that LeBron is a confirmed billionaire, it will be interesting to see just how important winning is to him. Does he now play for the league minimum and give the Lakers much-needed cap space to sign quality players? Or does he take the maximum extension and deny the obvious?


Brian Haueter

Protesting Kapler

Gabe Kapler’s actions regarding his national anthem protest are offensive and out of line. While we all are hurting for the families affected by the tragedy in Texas, the actions and timing of Mr. Kapler are far worse than any fielding error.

We celebrate Memorial Day to honor and pay respect to those in the military that made the ultimate sacrifice to protect our very freedoms that Mr. Kapler enjoys on a daily basis. We play the national anthem and stand for our flag to honor and thank those who were not fortunate enough to survive protecting us.

Bill Allen
Capistrano Beach


Gabe Kapler, San Francisco Giants manager, decided to stand and respect the national anthem on Memorial Day because of his respect for our military. On other days, he plans on sitting out in protest. I never realized that our national anthem had different meanings depending on the day.


Dave Eng
Thousand Oaks

Dodgers blues

Don’t overreact, Dodgers fans, the season’s still young. Some teams just have another team’s number like the Pirates seem to have with the Dodgers this year. Even the legendary 1927 Yankees lost four straight and 10 of 22 to the sixth-place Cleveland Indians in that otherwise historic season.

William Peterson


Boy, after losing five of six games, it’s a good thing the Dodgers aren’t in the same division as the Pirates.

Ken Blake


Craig Kimbrel is one of the greatest closers of all time, but he realizes he’s having mechanical issues and Dodgers coaches are trying to fix it.

June 3, 2022

Broken promise

Thanks for the “breakdown” between the two NBA Finals teams. Depending on which team you pick, you can’t lose because of the confusing expert advice. The key to picking the winner depends on what insider you choose.

Patrick Kelley
Los Angeles

Looking backward

Every day when I view the B section of The Times, I am reminded of the clever reader who wrote the Yoda-esque comment in the early days of the pandemic. Something to the effect of “Print the Sports section backwards please do not.”

If our local paper can afford a separate sports section, I assume that The Times probably can too.

Noel Park
Rancho Palos Verdes



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