Two Trades for LA Angels to Consider as Billy Eppler Faces Pressure

Los Angeles Angels, Joe Maddon, Billy Eppler (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)
Los Angeles Angels, Joe Maddon, Billy Eppler (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images) /

The GM meetings start on Monday and with that comes with the talks of the possibilities of trades. LA Angels general manager, Billy Eppler, may face some pressure amongst fans and higher up, like the owner himself, Arte Moreno.

The LA Angels picked up Eppler’s option for the 2020 season with certain expectations from fans about competing and showing better performance from their players. The GM meetings give Eppler the option to meet with others in the same respected position as him and from those talks may spark conversation about trades.

The most specific need for the Angels right now is pitching, more specifically starting pitching which can come from different sources which of course include trades, free agent signings, and from within. From what we already know, Moreno is looking to increase payroll for the Angels, which is good news for Eppler if he is looking to the free agent market with the likes of Gerrit Cole, Stephen Strasburg, Zack Wheeler, etc.

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The right deal may come via trade from some of the Angels farm system or current major league roster, with the right connections Billy Eppler can string together the right moves to get the team in the direction he wants them to go.

The Angels could try to go for the Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Matthew Boyd who was a hot name last season during the trade deadline. The Angels made a move for Justin Upton in 2017 under Billy Eppler which could mean that the Angels have good relations with the Tigers and although nothing formulated last season, doesn’t mean they still can’t work something up this offseason.

One of the needs on the Tigers end should be to acquire as much young talent as they can which the Angels have plenty in the farm system. While I advised that the Angels should be careful with shipping away prospects, letting go of the right ones could be beneficial for them without too much risk of restarting their farm system. The Tigers may still hope to cash out big on Boyd, but the Angels could persuade them with the right deal and without sacrificing too much, quality over quantity and vice versa always plays a factor.

The other position the Angels are in need of an upgrade is at catcher, and according to an article by CBS Sports, the Cubs may make Willson Contreras available based on the direction they want to go. Joe Maddon certainly has his connections with him during his years in Chicago, however, the Cubs may have a high price tag based on his performance which the Angels may not want to match what they’re seeking.

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Contreras would certainly be an upgrade the Angels need and he would provide sufficient offense and the ability to help the pitching staff that also needs to improve significantly. They could also certainly go for the free agent option if they wish with a possible reunion with Martin Maldonado as there was a good relationship between the two sides. Either way the Angels go, expect them to make a play for a catcher and preferably one that is good with the pitching staff.

Both of these positions that the Angels need to address which are pitching and catching are things that Billy Eppler can certainly lookout for in terms of trades during the meetings. Also, depending on how big the expectations are in Arte Moreno’s mind, Eppler could be expected to make some big moves during this offseason.

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Hopefully the connections that he has already made with some teams can help him coming up, and he can at least start the frame work of some key trades that may develop in the offseason. One thing is for certain, the Angels need to make some moves that should excite fans this offseason and get them ready for 2020.