LA Angels News

LA Angels: Five Biggest Storylines to Watch for the 2019 Season

By Vincent Page
ANAHEIM, CA - MARCH 24: Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim attends a press conference after he agreed to terms of a 12-year, $430 million contract extension at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on March 24, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)
ANAHEIM, CA - MARCH 24: Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim attends a press conference after he agreed to terms of a 12-year, $430 million contract extension at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on March 24, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images) /
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TEMPE, ARIZONA – FEBRUARY 19: Jo Adell #59 poses for a portrait during Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim photo day on February 19, 2019 in Tempe, Arizona. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
TEMPE, ARIZONA – FEBRUARY 19: Jo Adell #59 poses for a portrait during Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim photo day on February 19, 2019 in Tempe, Arizona. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images) /

The Prospects

Besides Mike Trout (and Shohei Ohtani), there hasn’t been very many top prospects for the Angels coming up to the big league club and making a difference. Even last year, while David Fletcher and Taylor Ward saw run, only Jaime Barria made an exceptional impact.

This year is when things will begin to change for the Halos. Billy Eppler has completely revived the farm system, something Mike Trout noticed and was a large reason as to why he’s staying in Anaheim for the rest of his career.

While the real production in the MLB will begin in 2020 for the Halo’s farm system, there are still a handful of names that could see action in 2019, especially if the Angels fall out of contention down the stretch like last year.

In terms of pitching, two names to watch are Griffin Canning and Jose Suarez. Canning, a 2017 second round pick, blazed through the minor league levels last season, ending the season in Triple-A Salt Lake City. While he struggled there, that’s not uncommon and a bounce back to start 2019 could see him called up to the major league club sometime this summer.

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Suarez also made his way through every level last season, and posted solid numbers throughout. Like Canning though, he saw some struggles in Salt Lake. After an offseason of work, however, there is hope he can develop into a mid-rotation arm for the Angels and debut as soon as this year, becoming a key rotation piece in 2020.

The position prospects for the Angels are where it starts to get really fun. This Spring Training we saw Matt Thaiss absolutely destroy baseballs. He is an Albert Pujols injury away from being called up to the bigs after being a forgotten Angels prospect for most.

After Thaiss, watching top prospect Jo Adell continue his progression will be something to watch, even if he doesn’t debut at The Big A until 2020. A freak injury in Spring Training where he strained his hamstring and sprained an ankle rounding second will keep him sidelined for two months as he recovers. However, Adell was extremely impressive last year, and showed in Spring Training he can hang with MLB talent.

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