LA Angels: Grading Each Offseason Signing
By Vincent Page
While the LA Angels have not had the offseason many fans hoped for, they still made a handful of signings to improve their team for 2019.
Of course, the LA Angels still have time for a big move, they could very well still sign Yasmani Grandal should his price go down or even former Cy Young winner Dallas Kuechel. Nonetheless, this piece is focused solely on grading the four major league signings the team has made thus far.
1B/DH Justin Bour
The Angels started their offseason in a move not many saw coming, signing former Miami Marlin Justin Bour to a one-year, $2.5 million deal.
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The left-handed hitter had a down year in 2018, but had developed into a nice piece a year prior. In 2017, Bour hit .289 with 25 home runs and 83 RBI’s. While his numbers did regress in 2018, the Angels are hoping to find the production Bour had in 2017, and they believe they’ve found the way to do that.
As we all know, Albert Pujols is clogging up first base as much as he is the Angels’ payroll. He is, statistically, no longer an above-average player. However, the Angels still believe he can contribute on the field despite season ending surgeries in the majority of his Halo years.
The tentative plan would be for Bour and Pujols to platoon first base while Shohei Ohtani is the everyday designated hitter. As Ohtani is rehabbing from Tommy John, there will be days where he can’t hit, which Pujols will likely slide into the DH spot.
While this move was not a big one, it is one that playoff teams make. Bour is truly elite against right-handed pitching, something the Angels have lacked for years in their lineup, and will make things run much smoother come 2019. For that type of money, Bour is a very welcome addition to the 2019 Halos.