Scouts’ Views: AL West

An AL scout spoke with Sporting News’ Ryan Fagan about three of the division’s biggest questions:

Q: Which pitcher (if any) will emerge as the Angels’ ace?
Scout says: "I think Joe Saunders has a chance to really solidify himself as one of the premier lefthanded pitchers in the game. He’s a tremendous makeup guy, works extremely hard, has a very strong aptitude for the game. He’s probably the most durable guy in that rotation. To me, Saunders is a complete package and could put himself in that category as one of the top five to 10 lefties in the game."

Q: Which team in the division is the best defensively?
Scout says: "Texas is strong, but their catching is going to be a question mark. Seattle is good; Oakland doesn’t really have a premier guy. But it’s gotta be the Angels, with their pitching and how they play up the middle with Torii Hunter and Erick Aybar. The Angels have got to be considered the best defensive club."

Q: New Rangers DH Vladimir Guerrero has great numbers at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington during his career. Will that continue?
Scout says: "Absolutely. One, because he likes to hit in that park. And two, because he’s a tremendous presence in the batter’s box and has a tremendous supporting cast around him. Even if he doesn’t produce exactly what he did for L.A., he’s in a hitter-friendly ballpark geared to the right-center field gap. I think he’s going to be very impactful for that lineup."

This story first appeared in Sporting News magazine. If you are not receiving the magazine, subscribe today, or pick up a copy, available at most Barnes & Noble, Borders and Hudson Retail outlets.

An AL scout spoke with Sporting News’ Ryan Fagan about three of the division’s biggest questions:

Q: Which pitcher (if any) will emerge as the Angels’ ace?
Scout says: "I think Joe Saunders has a chance to really solidify himself as one of the premier lefthanded pitchers in the game. He’s a tremendous makeup guy, works extremely hard, has a very strong aptitude for the game. He’s probably the most durable guy in that rotation. To me, Saunders is a complete package and could put himself in that category as one of the top five to 10 lefties in the game."

Q: Which team in the division is the best defensively?
Scout says: "Texas is strong, but their catching is going to be a question mark. Seattle is good; Oakland doesn’t really have a premier guy. But it’s gotta be the Angels, with their pitching and how they play up the middle with Torii Hunter and Erick Aybar. The Angels have got to be considered the best defensive club."

Q: New Rangers DH Vladimir Guerrero has great numbers at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington during his career. Will that continue?
Scout says: "Absolutely. One, because he likes to hit in that park. And two, because he’s a tremendous presence in the batter’s box and has a tremendous supporting cast around him. Even if he doesn’t produce exactly what he did for L.A., he’s in a hitter-friendly ballpark geared to the right-center field gap. I think he’s going to be very impactful for that lineup."

This story first appeared in Sporting News magazine. If you are not receiving the magazine, subscribe today, or pick up a copy, available at most Barnes & Noble, Borders and Hudson Retail outlets.

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