Friday, March 30, 2007

Angels address offensive shortcomings, tell Guererro to swing harder

Spring Training 2007 Preview: Los Angeles Angels

The Angels failed to add a power bat this offseason to bolster their relatively mediocre offense, but Manager Mike Scioscia believes he has come up with the solution to the problem.

"We're going to tell Vladimir Guererro to swing a whole lot harder," Scioscia said.

Scioscia did not elaborate on this point, but, rather, leaned back in his chair and demonstratively dusted off his hands for about five minutes.

Angels General Manager Bill Stoneman, reportedly on the hot seat this season after failing to add a true middle-of-the-order presence to the Angels' lineup, immediately and wholeheartedly jumped on the idea of having Guererro swing at the ball even harder.

"Think about it," he said. "Vlad has hit 65 homers the past two years, twice what anyone else on the team has done. But - he's also hit 63 doubles in that span. If he swings a lot harder, you figure, probably 40 of those doubles go over the fence, he finishes the year with 60 some homers and viola! Offense is fixed."

Guererro seemed open to the idea of swinging harder, though refused to take credit for being the Angels' lone source of offense.

"I'll see what I can do," he said.

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