LA Angels: 2020 Will Be a Career Defining Season for Andrelton Simmons

Los Angeles Angels, (Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images)
Los Angeles Angels, (Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images) /

When the LA Angels traded away their top-two pitching prospects for Andrelton Simmons, Halo fans were rightfully nervous about the acquisition. After some elite years and some injury-marred seasons, Simba is now facing a career-defining 2020 campaign.

While (probably) every single one of those LA Angels fans who questioned the trade initially will say they’re thankful for it now, that doesn’t mean it’s been all roses for Simmons since he got to Anaheim. When he’s on the field, ranging in between second and third base, Simmons is amongst the best fielders in the baseball. In the batter’s box, he has improved himself as a hitter and has become an all-around ballplayer.

His offense took a step back statistically this year though. One can chalk that up to being in and out of the lineup due to the injuries he battled throughout the season. We also saw a decline in his defensive metrics, even though Simmons remains head and shoulders above the rest of the MLB’s shortstops defensively.

More from Halo Hangout

The real question comes down to this: Are these both offensive and defensive regressions due to battling injuries, or simply because Simmons is trending downwards as he enters his 30’s?

I still believe in Andrelton Simmons ability to be an elite shortstop in this league. I’m not concerned about his stats from last year, partially because I do believe they were a consequence of his injuries.

What really concerns me is the injuries themselves. In 2017-2018, Simmons was able to remain relatively healthy and was a Top 15 MVP finisher in both seasons. However, 2016 and 2019 were both seasons that Simmons missed significant time. In both of those years, his offensively numbers noticeably dropped.m

While his legacy could be defined by how well he performs in 2020, Simmons’ financial future could be as well. His contract ends after 2020, and while the Angels could extend him this offseason, their focus rightfully remains on spending big in free agency.

Next. Josh Donaldson Would Make Angels Offense Elite

Having spent 2019 in and out of the lineup, it’s hard to gauge Simmons’ value at the moment. It wouldn’t shock me to see him go into 2020 without an extension. However, what Simmons does have is a Hall of Fame case due to nearly a full decade of historically elite defense. His fate in Cooperstown will be how much longer he can continue to play at this elite level.

2019 left questions about whether Andrelton Simmons can do that. 2020 will provide the answers.