Wood's up (finally), but will he play?

The Angels have made a great roster move ... so why isn't Steve Bisheff happy?

    So the Angels finally come to their senses and start calling around, finding out what free agent pitchers might be available. Better yet, they recall Brandon Wood from Salt Lake.
    Except, in Wood's case, they don't plan to play him. They plan to sit him.

    "Right now he's a reserve player for us," Manager Mike Scisocia says. "Other guys can give us nice chemistry in the offense. Wood's time will come."

    It will? Somebody please explain this one to me. It makes no sense at all. Wood is the top power hitting prospect on a team desperate for more power. He hit like crazy in spring training, he delivered four home runs in his first six games at triple A. He is as ready as he is ever going to be to play in the majors.

    And you call him up to sit on the bench?

    This might be the most baffling decision Scioscia has made since he's been in Orange County. He defends it by saying he wants more "table setters." He has fallen in love with Maicer Izturis for some reason, making him his No. 3 hitter. Some of his scouts should tell him "Izzy," as Mike calls him, would be a fill-in utility man, at best, on any other team that considers itself a real pennant contender.


    I've covered baseball for a long time, and I can't remember a more obvious time to stick your top prospect in there and let him play. I can see it. Most of you can see it. Why in the name of Tommy Lasorda can't Scioscia see it?

    Come on, Mike. As natural decisions go, this is as easy as deciding what toppings you want on your next pizza.

    So don't be stubborn. Just do it.

Last night, Izturis batted third and DH'd.
And, yes, in case you're wondering, this is the exact same Izturis who turned 28 last fall and has, in his illustrious career, posted a .270/.334/.377 line in the major leagues. Those numbers aren't bad for a shortstop batting eighth or ninth. Not bad at all. But if you've got him DH'ing and batting third, then you're simply doing something wrong. Something terribly wrong.

At least if you've got him doing those things for more than a snapshot in time. And my guess is that last night's lineup was just a snapshot. Funny thing about these affairs ... they almost always resolve themselves logically, and usually with some haste. I don't know if Mike Scioscia really believes that Izturis is better and more valuable than Wood. He might. Some managers have an inordinate fondness for the Proven Veteran™, and Scioscia might be one of them. But events have a way of trumping inordinate fondnesses, especially if you give the events a few weeks to work their necessary magic.

I might be wrong. But I suspect that if you look at an Angels box score in a month or two, you'll be significantly more likely to find Wood's name than Izturis'.