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Angels owner Arte Moreno gives Mike Scioscia a vote of confidence

May 15, 2013, 2:51 PM EDT

mike-scioscia-angels Getty Images

Earlier this month Albert Pujols stuck up for Mike Scioscia amid speculation that the Angels’ awful start could put his job in jeopardy and now owner Arte Moreno has given the manager a vote of confidence.

Moreno replied “right now, zero” when asked by Jon Morosi of FOXSports.com what the chances are of Scioscia being fired, which is in itself is a pretty interesting response if you’re into reading between lines.

Here’s more of what Moreno told Morosi:

Mike has zero problems, OK? This is his 14th year. Mike goes beyond what he does on the field. He’s a good person. He’s a good person in the community, a very good baseball guy. You don’t have to ask me. You just ask other managers, other baseball people. Look at 14 years’ worth of productivity. Look at his record. …

You know what? To me, if you’re going to let someone go, you’re letting someone go because you don’t believe their performance is what your expectations are. If everybody on the team was hitting .300, and the pitchers were undefeated, and all our relievers had done a good job and we’d made no errors, we wouldn’t be in this conversation. Right now, in Mike’s job, I have no questions about Mike.

Couple things. One, it seems like not a great sign when, in trying to talk up the manager, the owner brings up his being “a good person.” Two, it’s becoming increasingly common for people to dismiss criticism of a manager by saying, basically, if the players were performing better this wouldn’t be an issue, which flipped around seems to suggest managers shouldn’t receive praise for teams with players performing well. Can’t have it both ways.

Whatever the case, Scioscia is under contract through 2018, so to fire him Moreno would be eating a ton of money.

  1. vanmorrissey - May 15, 2013 at 2:58 PM

    He ate a ton of money with those Pujols and Hamilton contracts, though, consider that.

  2. Utley's Hair - May 15, 2013 at 3:01 PM

    Reports of Scioscia’s imminent demise are ridiculously premature.

    • cur68 - May 15, 2013 at 3:18 PM

      The dreaded “OwnersVoteOfConfidence”. This will not end well for Mike.

      • bigharold - May 15, 2013 at 6:06 PM

        Generally, I’d say that Scioscia isn’t in jeopardy until he got the vote of confidence. Usually that’s the prelude to firing the manager. Perhaps this is an instance of the owner saying what he means and meaning what he said?

        The plot thickens.

  3. pjmitch - May 15, 2013 at 3:01 PM

    Not an Angel fan but I live in So Cal so I stay up on the going ons in Anaheim. It would be a mistake to fire Scioscia

  4. echech88 - May 15, 2013 at 3:05 PM

    The idea that Scioscia’s contract is keeping him from being fired is laughable when you consider how much money Arte Moreno has flushed down the toilet to get rid of Gary Matthews, Scott Kazmir, Vernon Wells and Bobby Abreu before their contracts were up.

  5. jarathen - May 15, 2013 at 3:15 PM

    I think Scioscia is decent but falling behind the next wave of managers who get what GMs are doing.

    In the case of the Angels, though, if there’s a problem, it’s Arte. He promoted Tony Reagins and fired Bill Stoneman. He forced through the signings of Pujols and Hamilton.

  6. billybawl - May 15, 2013 at 3:30 PM

    He shouldn’t fire Scioscia unless he signed and negotiated with some of those free agents.

    That said, if Scioscia was fired, I wouldn’t be shocked if he agreed to forego some of Arte’s money to sign with another team. I don’t see him enjoying retirement or becoming a broadcaster, and I think his services would be in demand.

    • blabidibla - May 15, 2013 at 3:48 PM

      Dodgers would hire him in a heartbeat.

  7. mybrunoblog - May 15, 2013 at 3:56 PM

    A vote of confidence from the owner is like Michael kissing Fredo in Cuba on new years eve.

  8. chacochicken - May 15, 2013 at 4:00 PM

    Why?

  9. jwbiii - May 15, 2013 at 5:02 PM

    But did Moreno say that reports of Scioscia’s imminent ouster were “ridiculously premature”?

  10. losangelesfan - May 15, 2013 at 5:23 PM

    Scioscia would have a couple of offers by the end of the day he gets fired.

  11. westcoastredbird - May 15, 2013 at 5:58 PM

    Once Arte figures out that Dipoto traded Jean Segura to the Brewers for Zack Grienke he’s gone. Dude is leading the NL in hitting and has 7 jacks. He will be an all star for the next 10-12 years. The Angels are mortgaging their future for a shot at a quick World Series and it has back fired. I hope Sciosia stays as he is very good manager. Getting Weaver back will also help. Like pjmitch I live in SoCal and follow local sports but I love the Redbirds.

    • jarathen - May 16, 2013 at 8:13 AM

      Segura’s problem is generally health and the fact that he will be eventually need to move to 2B, where his offense, while certainly above-average, will not be quite as impressive as it is at short.

      He’s a very talented player, and the Angels sold low on him, and they look dumb for it, but at the time, it was hard to be sure if he was going to be a sure hit or another bright star dimmed by injury. Also, Erick Aybar had little injury history coming into this year, so the position seemed fairly locked up.

      What I’m saying is that the Angels should have put Segura at 3B and not traded for two months of Greinke. But it’s difficult to know how much of that trade was Arte demanding a playoff push.

  12. docboss - May 15, 2013 at 7:00 PM

    Mike is holding the job for Oquendo. Albert will want his manager. Actually a good choice.

    • jeffa43 - May 16, 2013 at 1:36 AM

      Cuz declining 240 hitters can demand who manages….

      What?

  13. crackersnap - May 15, 2013 at 11:57 PM

    One of the fun things about being an owner is that, yes, you do get to have it both ways.

  14. bcirej - May 16, 2013 at 6:30 AM

    Scoiscia isn’t the problem, it’s the pitching and hitting that the GM and Moreno gave him to work with. I would like to know the answer to a question though….why isn’t Trout leading off? I know he started slow, but last year’s record with Trout in leadoff should demand he be there.

    • jarathen - May 16, 2013 at 8:14 AM

      I don’t know why Scioscia wants Trout hitting third. I always thought they should’ve gone Trout-Hamilton-Pujols. If Trout gets on base he’s distracting, and these aging sluggers can use all the help they can get.

      • jarathen - May 16, 2013 at 2:51 PM

        I meant hitting second.

  15. andreweac - May 16, 2013 at 8:37 AM

    Arte needs to fire himself. He screwed his own franchise by refusing to go over slot under the previous CBA and not spending big $ in the Latin prospect market.

    Arte was the one who put Reagins, Scioscia’s puppet, in charge.

    Arte was the one who lead the brigade to sign Boohols and the worst contract in the history of professional sport.

    Arte needs a reality check. He’s the problem.

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