Founded by Chuck Richter in 2004, Angelswin.com is the preeminent blog and fan site for the Los Angeles Angels. Dubbed the “Voice of the Fans” by KNX 1070AM Radio, AngelsWin.com’s seeks to create a robust, 24/7 community for Angels fans.
AngelsWin.com connects with its members and the public, both locally and globally, through our website & forum that registers a million page views a month and our award winning social media outlets that reach over 7,000 fans daily. Google ranks AngelsWin.com as the #1 website for several search terms, including “Los Angeles Angels Fansite” and ranked second to the Angels official website for “Los Angeles Angels Forum”.
One of the distinguishing features of AngelsWin.com is its writers and content. AngelsWin has a stable of talented writers that feature columns regularly on the blog, ranging from our annual Top-50 Angels Prospects column to advice on where to eat before a ballgame. Their work regularly appears on the Orange County Register’s website through a partnership agreement and appeared in the USA Today, L.A. Times, Washington Post, ESPN, FOX Sports West and the Japan Times – just to name a few. The Los Angeles Angels even included written contributions from the AngelsWin.com writers in their book “Under the Halo” which chronicled the first 50 years of the team’s history.
AngelsWin.com is more than just an online experience. Through our annual “Fanfests,” Angelswin.com connects its members in person to form lasting friendships and create a feeling that has become known as #AngelsFamily on Twitter. Held during Spring Training in Tempe, AZ and then again in Summer at the Big A, these events offer attendees the opportunity to be on the “inside” of the Angels by having access to the Angels past and present major league players, minor league players, broadcasters and front office personnel, and raise money for charities, such as the Miracle League.
The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim recognize the service and community that is brought together through AngelsWin.com. It is a relationship that is felt and appreciated mutually. The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim made AngelsWin.com the first blog site to gain access to their Press Box in 2009, and has allowed us to continue ever since. The pinnacle of this relationship was reached in 2012 when the Angels owner, Arte Moreno, joined AngelsWin.com at the Spring Training FanFest as our guest of honor. Arte, who reads the site regularly, had so much fun, that he enthusiastically committed to coming again in 2013!
AngelsWin.com is proud of its credentials, high standards, quality content and the relationships it has built over the years. The Board of Directors believes strongly in the service it provides to Angels fans. To that end, it strives to reach as many fans as possible in hopes that all can experience Angels baseball year round, whether in or out of the ballpark.
-Your Angelic Epiphany: When did you know that you were an Angels fan? My interest in the Angels was some time in 1978, I was eight years old. My step dad Robert Holmes would always look for an Angels game to put on the radio when we were in the car driving around, in the garage working on the car or outside doing yard work, if the game wasn’t on television. I became familiar with the players that year and in 1979, when the Angels won their first pennant, I became a lifelong fan. From that point forward, there weren’t many Angels games I missed on either the radio or television. My three favorite players of all-time are Chili Davis, Tim Salmon and Vlad Guerrero.
-Tell me about the genesis of AngelsWin.com; the first idea, the players involved, etc. At the conclusion of the exciting 2002 Championship Season I went looking online for a fan run website and forum to talk about the Halos 24/7. Much to my surprise I didn’t find anything, so I put together an idea I wanted for a website and ran it by a friend of mine who worked for the Angels and a couple guys in the web design department for a company I worked for at that time (OC Title – FPS). They all gave me thumbs up on creating a website by the fans, for the fans. Eddie Valencia and Don Mason were instrumental in helping me execute what I visually created in my mind in my mind for the world wide web, for Angels fans on the net. Shortly thereafter, AngelsWin.com went LIVE in February of 2004. -What’s it like doing this from outside of SoCal? Do you think living away from Orange County gives you a better perspective? Born, raised and lived in Southern California for 35 years, I decided to sell my house during the boom in 2005 so I could be closer to my dad who had a stroke in 2003 and to live in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. A place I visited many times as a kid visiting my dad. I have a sister that lived up here too, so it was a no brainer. Ended up purchasing a house on the river 30 miles east of Seattle. Couldn’t be more happier.
As far as running the website from up here in the PNW, its worth noting the website got big after I left So Cal. I still catch most all of the games on MLB Extra Innings or MLBTV and of course I get nine games up here at Safeco Field when the Angels are playing the Mariners, not to mention some Angel home games when I travel down to So. California once a year and in Tempe for our Spring Training Fanfest. Having the Tacoma Rainers up here allow me to also see the Salt Lake Bees (Angels AAA team) several times a year as well. I wouldn’t say living up here gives me a better perspective, but I can spend more time at home watching the game instead of at the ballpark where you may miss some close plays, or gain a perspective on how a player is going. If you’re a true fan, you’ll get out to some games and find a way watch and listen no matter where you live.
-Tell me about the growth of the website, how you found your fan base, how you found your writers. After 2-3 years of struggling to put AngelsWin.com on the map for Angels fans on the net, Arte Moreno’s name change did just that for us. Popular news/talk radio in Southern California KNX 1070 wanted to find an Angels fan to speak on behalf of the fans, so after a quick Google search they found AngelsWin.com at the top, found my contact info and scheduled me to be on the air one weekday evening during rush hour for some 6-7 minutes. Boy was I nervous, but it was also exciting and we gained a lot more members and viewers on our website after that night. A year later, in January of 2006, KNX 1070 asked me to be interviewed again on the radio when the name change was official. An AP Reporter also reached out to me for a phone interview which was later published on major sports network websites such as ESPN, SI and more. Later on in 2006, an entire community of Angels fans from the ESPN Message Board decided they were done with the constant trolling from other fans and moved over to AngelsWin.com. They have called AngelsWin.com their home ever since, as did a good chunk of the Angels fans from MLB.com’s Angels Fan Forum a year later. In the 2009 playoffs, we were asked to Blog about the Angels for USA Today. That was a lot of fun and a ton of exposure for our website, as was the time when the Japan Times contacted us for an interview from Japan after we signed Hideki Matsui for the 2010 season. Before AM 830 and ESPN merged, I was asked to be a regular on the air for a show titled “The Richter Scale” which was live on the radio with Jeff Biggs, talking about the Los Angeles Angels prospects on a weekly basis. That was a lot of fun and huge for the website.
On July 4th, 2009 during our Summer Fanfest at the Big A, Angels VP of Communications Tim Mead gave AngelsWin.com a full access press credential to interview the players, go on the field and sit in the press box. It was the first time the Angels organization granted a fan site writer/blogger a press credential. We were the first! That was truly an honor and an amazing experience for me. We’ve been credentialed many other times since that first appearance — including on the road at Safeco Field. We’ve also credentialed five other writers from our website to cover the Angels, proudly paving the way for other professionally run fan sites/Blogs to receive press passes in the future.
The website reached a mountain top of success in the spring of 2012 when Arte Moreno, the Los Angeles Angels owner accepted our invitation to speak at our annual event in Tempe, AZ. In a banquet room that was filled with over 125 Angels fans, Arte Moreno stepped to the podium and answered questions from our own Geoff Stoddart that was prepared by our team of AngelsWin.com writers. He went on to field questions from the audience for an additional 15 minutes (45 minutes in total), then invited his entire team that followed him to the Fiesta Resorts Banquet Room to step onto the stage and introduce themselves, including the players and prospects that were invited. Here’s the video of a night Angels fans will never forget. https://vimeo.com/38365575/
-What’s the best part of this for you? I think it’s a combination of: The community of Angels fans talking 24x7x365, the annual events and the friendships formed. With no disrespect to other fan run Blogs, it’s one thing to read a Blog article and comment on it, then leave, but what’s special and what separates us from other websites is that there’s a sports bar type atmosphere of thousands of people that all have one thing in common, that extend beyond just being Angels fans talking all things Angels Baseball and more all year round — but to also have the chance to meet face to face at our spring and summer fanfests annually where the online relationship turns into a real, tangible friendship. That to me is what makes this fun for me. I love meeting new people that love the same team I root for passionately. Also, our annual spring and summer fanfest so much fun. I really look forward to those every year and the Angels and Tim Mead really go out of their way to make them a special time for the fans.
-Tell me a little about your Spring Training Fan Fests. Is there a typical AngelsWin.com fan? What have they taught you about being an Angels fan? A typical three-day fanfest weekend in spring training consists of games Friday-Sunday, with a website dinner in Tempe on Friday night, followed by our website party on Saturday evening, going through the night, finally getting in early on Sunday to watch the Angels take BP and to hear Tim Mead’s annual state of the organization speech, followed by a Q&A with the fans while he stands on top of the Angels dugout, with the Angels taking BP in the background on the field. There are other mini pool parties and bar hopping events, but the Saturday night web party has incredibly fun for 6 years now. We’ve had guests such as Arte Moreno, Rex Hudler, Steve Physioc, Terry Smith, Jose Mota, Tim Mead, Dennis Kuhl, Darren Chan, Victor Rojas, Jerome Williams and family, several Angels prospects and your own Bill Plunkett from the OCR join us and do Q&A’s with the fans, while they mingle, eat and drink with us thereafter. One year we packed in over 100 into the small Hail Marys establishment. This year we moved our venue to the Fiesta Resorts Hotel to accommodate our large crowd, which included an outdoor patio bar, an indoor stage and podium w/ a microphone and several beautifully laid out tables/chairs set for our Italian Dinner that was served while we listened to our guest speakers.
There is definitely not a typical AngelsWin.com fan, but I think that’s what makes the time throughout the year so special. So many different personalities, so many differing opinions and a ton of memories throughout the year shared by both laughter and tears, good times and bad times.
Some of the newer fans that want a playoff berth or World Championship every year or it’s a failure taught me how grateful I am to have gone through the tough years as an Angels fan. I really love what Arte Moreno has done here and the fact that I know my team will be in contention every season is good enough for me.
-Where’s all of this going? What are your goals for the future? I’ve turned down relocating AngelsWin.com by suitors wanting us to move our memberships, traffic and content over to the likes of Fox Sports, Scout.com, ESPN SweetSpot and other Blog networks over the years. It is important to me to remain independent in an effort to continue to provide a home for Angels fans on the net. There’s something to not being told what we can or cannot do, or given a quota of work to perform.
Growing up, I rarely had anyone to talk Angels Baseball with as almost everyone in my neighborhood were Dodgers fans. Through my teen years and young adult life I yearned for the opportunity to talk Angels Baseball with other fans and form friendships with other Angels fans. So that said, my goals for the future would be to continue to provide an internet home for the fans to get their Angels fill in an environment that they chat Angels Baseball 24/7, but also other sports & off-topic subjects as well.
I really take pride in the type of content we provide for the fans and our viewers. We have some incredibly talented and dedicated people that are a big part of AngelsWin.com’s success, delivering Angels articles, features and exclusive interviews all year round. Geoff Bilau, Adam Dodge, Geoff Stoddart, David Saltzer, Eric Notti, Brian Ilten, Bruce Nye, Robert Cunningham, Scott Stedman, Jonathan Northrop, Lou Garcia, Scott Fowler and Brian Waller.