Why the Los Angeles Angels Should the Favorites Against the New York Yankees

Steven ResnickSenior Writer IOctober 15, 2009

BOSTON - OCTOBER 11:  Juan Rivera #20 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim is greeted at the dugout by manager Mike Scioscia and teammates after Rivera hit a two-run single in the eighth inning against the Boston Red Sox in Game Three of the ALDS during the 2009 MLB Playoffs at Fenway Park on October 11, 2009 in Boston,  Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Even though the New York Yankees ended the season with the better record than the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, I believe that the Angels not only have the better team, but they should be considered the favorite over the Yankees.

Lineup wise the Angels have a better lineup top to bottom, which I will examine, also I will take a look at their pitching staffs as well.

First off let's starts with the Yankees lineup.

Derek Jeter-SS

Johnny Damon-LF

Mark Teixeira-1B

Alex Rodriguez-3B

Hideki Matsui-DH

Jorge Posada-C

Robinson Cano-2B

Nick Swisher-RF

Melky Cabrera-CF

The Angels lineup

Chone Figgins-3B

Bobby Abreu-RF

Torii Hunter-CF

Vladimir Guerrero-DH

Kendry Moralez-1B

Juan Rivera-LF

Maicer Izturis-2B

Mike Napoli-C

Erick Aybar-SS

Looking at the advantages for the Yankees the positions they have that are stronger than the Angels comes down to Jeter, Rodriguez, Cano.

The two positions that the Yankees and Angels are a virtual draw in are at first base with Kendry Morales and Mark Teixeira and at catcher with Mike Napoli and Jorge Posada.

The Angels have a distinct advantage with Abreu, Guerrero, Hunter, and Rivera.

But, it's also noteworthy to say that each team comes with a different type of philosophy offensively. The Angels will bunt, steal bases, get to first and third on singles, etc...Meaning they like to put pressure on the defense.

On the other side the Yankees tend to their power in the lineup to score runs. They will run on occasion, but really it's left to their sluggers in the middle of the lineup.

Bench players for the Yankees:

Brett Gardner-OF

Jose Molina-C

Erick Hinske-1b/OF

Bench players for the Angels:

Howie Kendrick-2B

Jeff Mathic-C

Gary Matthews Jr-OF

Bench wise the teams are even, no real advantage for either side.

Starting Pitching for the Yankees:

CC Sabathia

AJ Burnett

Andy Pettite

According to certain articles the Yankees may consider using a three man rotation due to the inconsistencies the Yankees have had with their fourth and fifth starters.

Starters for the Angels:

John Lackey

Jered Weaver

Joe Saunders

Scott Kazmir

Ervin Santana

Obviously when a team can bring out five extremely talented pitchers it's better than having three that you can rely on. So, in this case the Angels have another advantage.

Bullpen for the Yankees:

Alfredo Aceves

Joba Chamberlain

David Robertson

Phil Hughes

Phil Coke

Mariano Rivera

Bullpen for the Angels:

Darren Oliver

Jose Arredondo

Kelvin Jepsen

Sean O'Sullivan

Brian Fuentes

The edge here goes to the Yankees they just have better arms in the bullpen.

There's another reason why I believe that the Angels will take the season and that is the motivation to not only get to the World Series, but win it in the honor of Nick Adenhart!


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