LA Angels: The Angels Need to Really Convince Cole and Strasburg
It appears that both Gerrit Cole and Stephen Strasburg are meeting with multiple teams including the LA Angels that are interested a week before the Winter Meetings. There will certainly be speculation as to which teams are involved and how much these teams are willing to offer, but the Angels need to make a great sales pitch to both starters.
According to an article written by Ken Rosenthal, it is likely to believe that the LA Angels are on that list as teams that are discussing with both Cole and Strasburg and formulating plans on what will attract each starter. Of course money will be at the focal point of the meetings as both starters are expected huge payouts, with Cole making the most of the two, but there are certainly other factors to consider.
In terms of geographic, both Cole and Strasburg have roots in Southern California, however, their agent Scott Boras, has already made it well-known that location shouldn’t be the biggest concern for them in order to get more teams involved which is the role of the agent of course. There is no saying how much the Angels will be willing to spend. However, I have already made it known that I think the Angels should spend whatever it takes to get at least one of these top tier starters if they are serious about competing next season and the seasons to come.
Another factor to consider with all of this, is the how the team is shaping up currently and whether Cole and Strasburg believe they can win there for the foreseeable future. The Angels certainly have talent on the field which include the likes of legend Albert Pujols, arguably the best player in baseball right now Mike Trout, and a two-way Japanese phenom named Shoei Ohtani. They also have help on the way in one Jo Adell, who fans are eagerly awaiting to see what he can do at the major league level. These are all-star players that the Angels can certainly bring into the meeting room and use to try and convince both Cole and Strasburg. Another piece in the recruitment process is the Angels manager, Joe Maddon, who people will certainly listen to when his name is mentioned.
While I’m sure the Angels hired Joe Maddon to lead whatever team Eppler helps construct on the field, it is almost certain that the Angels could use him during the meeting process with both of these players and convince them to play for him in 2020 and beyond. There is also additional pieces that the Angels could mention that could certainly help both Cole and Strasburg and that is the infield that is shaping up to be one very reliant on defense. They have an infield that will be comprised of Andrelton Simmons, Tommy La Stella, David Fletcher, and others that the Angels can show to both free agents that could make them worry less if a ground ball is hit knowing they have a solid defensive team behind them.
The Angels could also potentially look to add more in terms of catching if they were to get someone whom they are familiar with, Martin Maldonado, who has familiarity with Gerrit Cole as he caught him before while with the Astros. All of these things can certainly help the Angels land one of the big ones in terms of the free agent pitching market, and with the Winter Meetings coming up, things could heat up.