The LA Angels sit four games out of the American League Wild Card Game as of right now. With the trade deadline looming, they have no other option but to be buyers.
Well, that’s not necessarily true for the LA Angels. They could, of course, do absolutely nothing. What they can’t really do, at least effectively, is be sellers this trade deadline.
On the outside looking in towards the playoffs, the Angels could in theory trade away expiring assets to further stock their uprising farm system. However, they only have a handful of expiring deals on their roster. So with their contention window opening next season, there is not a ton the Angels can sell off for the talent that will help next season.
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Kole Calhoun is a player thrown around a lot by fans on social media. The Angels have a team option, and therefore control of Calhoun, for 2020. And while Halo fans love the Red Baron, expectations of trading him for a quality arm that will boost this club to the playoffs are unrealistic.
It is also worth noting that Calhoun has been a phenomenal player this season. His defense remains elite, his bat has come to life, and he is a leader in the clubhouse. If the Angels were to ultimately ship him out, it could be a huge mistake.
Aside from Calhoun, the Angels just don’t have notable names on expiring deals to trade away. Billy Eppler has said they won’t be trading for expiring deals nor trading away controllable players.
That takes a lot of players out of the equation, and the Angels are better equipped to be buyers than sellers. They have an abundance of outfield prospects in the minor leagues. Even players like Taylor Ward and Matt Thaiss are dispensable if the right pitcher becomes available on the trade market.
So while the Angels season and second half success thus far may seem like fool’s gold, it’s hard to imagine them shipping players away come the deadline. They face the two worst teams in baseball for the next seven games. Predicted success will only boost the front office’s desire to improve this squad and get to the postseason.