The LA Angels mad another trade Monday shipping veteran second baseman Ian Kinsler to Boston in exchange for two pitching prospects lefty Williams Jerez and right hander Ty Buttery.
This trade along with the trade last Wednesday of catcher Martin Maldonado signals that the LA Angels front office is looking toward the future. Not that the Angels are giving up the season just yet, but for all intents and purposes they thinking and building for the next couple of seasons.
It’s always sad to a player that is on your favorite team be traded away for some unknown prospects, but we have to trust that Angels general manager Billy Eppler and his staff knows what they are doing right now. The trades have given and will give some players such as Francisco Arcia a chance to step up and show what they can do. Another player that might benefit from this move is Angel prospect Taylor Ward.
Ward was considered one of the top Angel prospects when he was drafted in the first round of the 2015 draft out of Fresno State. Ward started out as a catcher and struggled offensively bouncing around between Single and Double-A for the Angels in his first three season. This winter a decision was made for Ward to switch to 3rd base to take some pressure off of him worrying about his catching defense and the former Bulldog has flourished.
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Ward rocketed out of Double-A Mobile into Triple-A Salt Lake only six weeks into the season and he has continued to shine there as well. So far this season his combined stats are a .352 batting average with 14 homers and 57 RBIs. Will Ward get the chance to make that final step into the majors to help the Angels for the rest of the season? The answer could be forthcoming soon.
The question now becomes is there anyone else the Angels might part with today on the final day before the trade deadline.
The most likely candidate would be reliever Blake Parker. Parker has shown he can close games and he was also one of the best set-up men in the league in 2017. Other than that the Angels are probably done for this trade deadline. No, Mike Trout will not be traded. One superstar on the market (Bryce Harper) is enough.
As frustrating as this season and pretty much decade of Angels baseball has been for the Angel faithful, hopefully better things are on the horizon. This is Angels general manager third full season and they say it usually takes 3 to 5 years to turn a franchise around so he is just inside that window now. He has definitely bolstered the farm system and has made some very shrewd moves.
Even though not every move has worked for Eppler and the Angels I still have complete confidence in him being the right man for the job. Let’s see what Eppler has in store for us next.