The Los Angeles Angels’ general manager Billy Eppler has already made a few interesting trades to improve his club in 2020, but there are few players on the roster that should never come up in trade talks.
The Los Angeles Angels enter the 2020 MLB season in an interesting position. As a team with multiple superstar-quality players, including the best player in the game, there are certain expectations for success in Anaheim. That much was evident during the winter when the front office made a couple of solid trades to shore up the pitching staff and even had the poker in the fire for another significant deal that fell through.
Likewise, the Angels are not a perfect team as currently constructed. There are a number of questions as to how things will shake out, whether the moves they made over the winter will have enough impact to make them legitimate contenders or whether they will be good enough to justify adding other pieces as the season goes on.
That all means that the Angels could figure prominently in any trade chatter throughout the summer. Whether it is coming or going, the is likely to be some sort of player movement through Anaheim. Of course, that all depends on answering the question about how and when a season comes together in 2020, but with the assumption that those details are moving forward, that seems like more of a formality.
So assuming that the season does get underway shortly (early July) and that player transactions start resuming at the onset of spring training, then the trade market will undoubtedly open up. Since we’ve already looked at what players could be moved out of Anaheim this year, we thought we would change things up and instead determine which players are absolutely untouchable in any trade talks involving the Angels.
Hansel Robles was a unique find for the Angels when they plucked him off of waivers in June 2018. It proved to be an astute move and the former Mets cast-off has become a tremendous asset in the back-end of the bullpen, including earning the closer role in 2019, when he saved 23 games and put up a 2.88 ERA and a 9.3 K/9 ration. His value has been enhanced by limiting his walks, helping him to capture the potential he failed to grab in New York.
So why is he only an honorable mention?
While he is controllable for the next two seasons and should be cost-effective even during his last two turns through arbitration, that’s also part of what makes him attractive to potential buyers. There is also the volatility in regards to relievers in the game, and most teams that sell high often make out better than the teams that opt to hold on to pieces (see the Angels trade of Mike Clevinger for Vinny Pestano).