Many of you LA Angels fans are pissed off that the team has yet to acquire a front-line pitcher during free agency. Unfortunately that has not happened so far.
The LA Angels have again missed out on all the big name free agent pitchers. If this sounds like a broken record, that’s because it is. The Angels did not go away empty-handed in the off-season so far. They made a big splash signing third baseman Anthony Rendon to a seven-year 245 million dollar contract (Average Value of 35 million per year). This fills a 15-year void at this position. They also acquired a decent starting pitcher in Dylan Bundy for a collection of lower-level prospects. Finally they signed a very good pitcher in Julio Teheran that still has a very good upside.
So what else do the Angels need to be a playoff contender. Possibly nothing if things go as planned next season. Remember we have a very competent manager in Joe Maddon as well as a good pitching coach in Mickey Callaway which will help make-up for the lack of an ace. I still think that Angels general manager Billy Eppler has a few things that he has yet to do to complete the roster how he wants it.
The Angels can still make a trade for a pitcher which could even be David Price who may flourish upon being reunited with his first manager of his distinguished career. The Angels would likely not have to give up too much to get Price if they take on the final 96 million dollars of Price’s contract (three years). I’m not sure if the Angels would want to do that.
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The Angels have also been said to have interest in the Tigers rising young starter Matthew Boyd, but that would probably result in losing some top prospects which I am also not sure the Angels really want to do either. Boyd, I think would be much better than Price, but again the cost in prospects will be much higher.
The final pitcher the Angels are said to have inquired about is the Indians Mike Clevinger which would be a great choice, but again the cost in prospects would be pretty steep, which is why the Angels dropped out of the Corey Kluber race. He came up in the Angels’ organization before being traded for relieve Vinnie Pestano. There could a surprise pitcher that the Angels could be targeting as well that they are not linked to. You never know.
As for the catching situation I’m not sure where the Angels will go with this as there are a few good options left in free agency in Jason Castro and Robinson Chirinos. Either would be an upgrade to anything the Angels already have, mainly Max Stassi. The Angels should use Stassi as a back-up and maybe a late-inning defensive replacement.
Let’s see if Billy Eppler can be Eppler Claus for Angel fans and also manager Joe Maddon and pull a rabbit, or in this case a pitcher out of his hat. I believe 2020 will be a much better season than 2019 was even if the Angels make no more major moves. But I am more optimistic than most Angel fans. Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.