If Mark Trumbo is Traded, How Much Does it Actually Hurt the Angels Offense

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at Los Angeles Angels

The Angels are careening into the Thanksgiving holiday, and they are taking everyone with them. two nights ago, Chuck Richter of Angels Win leaked a little nugget of info into the twittersphere about the Angels and how they were in trade talks with the Colorado Rockies. Ditto Scotty Allen of Monkey With A Halo. The big name that they were being told was on the table for the Angels was Mark Trumbo, but no names were surfacing from the Rockies side. MLB Trade Rumors had the story yesterday morning.

I suffer from a sleep issue thanks to years of working night shift. This news, obviously, did not help that issue. But, in the two days that have passed since the rumor officially started circulating, I have had time to think about and reflect upon what kind of offensive loss the Angels would actually suffer if they were to trade Trumbo for what I am assuming is pitching from the Rockies. If it is not pitching, then Jerry Dipoto is most likely doing donuts in the parking lot of the Big A with his arm out of his drivers side window and his middle finger up for all of us to see.

Back to Trumbo and the possible offensive loss.

After pouring through the stats, I have come to the conclusion that the loss of Trumbo to Colorado would have, actually, little to no effect on the Angels lineup. Don’t throw your tomatoes just yet. Hear me out. Much was said last season about the Angels and their shortcomings. Much was made of Mark Trumbo’s 34 home runs and 100 RBI. But, what about Mark’s performance relative to the Angels offense as a unit? Below are the Angels fWAR, wRC+, wOBA, SLG and OBP from 2013 along with where they ranked in Major League Baseball:

So long #Trumbomb? Maybe...

So long #Trumbomb? Maybe…

fWAR – 26.4 – seventh (God bless Mike Trout)

wRC+ – 108 – tied for third with the Oakland Athletics

wOBA – .325 – fourth

SLG – .414 – sixth

OBP – .329 – tied for fourth with the Tampa Bay Rays

For the season, Mark Trumbo posted an fWAR of 2.5. If you take that out of the Angels total fWAR for 2013, they go from seventh to 10th in baseball. But 10th still puts them ahead of the Cardinals, Pirates, Indians and Rangers. Trumbo posted a wRC+ of 106 which was sixth best on the Angels. his .323 wOBA was sixth best. His .453 SLG was third best and his .294 OBP was dead last among Angels starters who got at least 200 plate appearances.

There is absolutely value in the power that Mark Trumbo has, but his overall offensive game – by wRC+ – was only 2% better than Josh Hamilton in 2013 and 5% worse than Albert Pujols. Needless to say, the Angels offense does not live and die with the inclusion of Mark Trumbo. What does die a little bit if Trumbo gets traded, is small piece of fandom. We will also get to see him go bananas paying 81 games in Coors Field every year if this goes down, so, that would sting a little bit too.

I see a lot of people on Twitter saying that if Trumbo gets traded, the Angels offense will flounder. That, in my opinion, is simply not the case. Mark Trumbo is a one-dimensional hitter. Granted, that one dimension is hitting dingers, and dingers are totally sexy. But if you use wOBA and wRC+ as your barometer for offensive success, the Angels had an elite offense relative to their competition in 2013. If Mark Trumbo is not in the lineup, that offense is still elite. It is just up to Dipoto to not punt this and trade him for someone like Jorge de la Rosa.

Topics: Hot Stove, Los Angeles Angels, Mark Trumbo

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  • Barbara Schriebman

    Uh/oh!! There MUST be a better way to secure pitching. If they can’t trade Howie Kendrick for a quality pitcher, something is very wrong. He played his heart out last season.

    Bartolo Colon!!!!!!!!!!!!?????????!?!

    • mikehllywa

      I don’t care that Colon had a good season. He’s a cheater.

    • bryanharveysmoustache

      The dude is also oooooold.

  • Tom Paine

    With all due respect, sir, you may very well be an idiot. The key number here is 100, as in runs batted in. Your statistical analysis is worthless if you can’t tell us who is going to drive in those runs with Mark gone. Or replace his glove when Pujols isn’t up to the task.

    • mikehllywa

      Calhoun has background at first base, and is the first call to fill-in on those days.

      The person driving in those runs is whoever is lucky enough to have as many opportunities as Trumbo had last year.

      If Trumbo hit 34 home runs last year, but only drove in 75 because he didn’t have as many chances to drive in runs because hitters in front of him, I doubt you make this assertion that his RBI’s have as much value.

      I’m an idiot because I don’t give enough weight to Trumbo’s RBI total? This coming from this person who puts importance into a stat that is entirely dependent upon the hitters in front of Trumbo getting on base.

    • abes_seed

      RBI don’t show the value of the player. I’m guessing if Trumbo could have hit for .280 he would have had 130-140 RBI… I love Trumbo but if we can get a SP for him I think we need to make the move.

      • [email protected]

        A opportunity based RBI is when a batter hits into a sacrifice or hits a sac. fly to score a run. In the last 2 seasons Cabrera has 8, therefore 1 in every 34.5 of his RBI’s are opportunity based, Trout in the same two seasons had 15 sf RBI’s therefore 1 of every 12 of Trouts 180 RBI’s are opportunity based. Best way to find equal opportunity based RBI’s is to match RISP with 2 outs: Trout AB 111 RBI’s 43 BA .288 OBP .443 SLG .431 OPS .852. Cabrera AB 111 RBI’s 76 BA .441 OBP .552 SLG .827 OPS 1.379. EQUALITY in at bats but extremely different in performance.
        How Cabrera fared in all of MLB: BA 1st OBP 1st SLG 1st. Now Trout: BA 4th OBP 3rd SLG 4th. Therefore how could anyone question that he may be the best hitter?
        What very few people don’t understand what separates Cabrera from the other elite hitters. Pitchers will throw a pitch nearly a foot outside and Miggy will crush it for a opposite HR, and pitchers will throw it nearly a foot inside that he will pull for a HR. Cabrera has a insane hitting zone. Trout in Situational Hitting chokes up to make contact while Miggy Crushes the ball in critical opportunities.

    • bryanharveysmoustache

      How do you start a sentence with “all due respect” and then call someone an idiot? C’mon man! Play nice now. You don’t have to like advanced stats, that’s fine. But RBI is a stat that is mostly determined by players getting on base (minus the home run of course). And as the writer points out, offensively, Trumbo wasn’t actually all that much better than Josh Hamilton last year.

      • [email protected]

        Are you seriously saying that RBI’s are not valued significantly because they are opportunity based? You then go on to say that if he were to hit .280 then he may have had 130-140 RBI’s. you may want to look at what the average is for a MLB hitter batting with a RISP or with 2 outs in the same situation. It’s under .250, therefore pitching dominates clutch situational hitting. Batters become very average extremely quick when they are unable to produce in situations that you consider opportunity based. Funny how fans start to value players batting averages when the situation to deliver opportunity based RBI’s are being undelivered. The teams that have been able to succeed in situational hitting over the past 3 years have played the most postseason games.