Angels baseball: Three hitters to watch in 2020

Tommy La Stella, Los Angeles Angels (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)
Tommy La Stella, Los Angeles Angels (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images) /
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Angels, Brian Goodwin
Brian Goodwin, Los Angeles Angels (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images) /

Angels hitters to watch in 2020: Brian Goodwin

Sometimes a team finds a player that other teams have simply overlooked. Sometimes a change of scenery is all that player needs to right the ship and really capitalize on their opportunities.

To have it happen with two players in the same season is a stroke of good luck.

Such was the case with Tommy La Stella. However, he was far from the only forgotten player to find a new home with the Angels last season. Brian Goodwin also found his way to Anaheim and it turned into a worthwhile investment for both parties.

Claimed off waivers from the Kansas City Royals at the end of spring training 2019, Goodwin had already run his course through two organizations. However, the Royals perhaps cut their ties a little too early.

After they picked him up in their own trade with the Washington Nationals, Goodwin proceeded to hit .266/.317/.415 in 27 games in KC. That wasn’t enough for Kansas City to find a home for him last season, and they cut him loose at the end of spring training.

That turned into a fortunate decision for the Angels. Goodwin proceeded to appear in 136 games and accumulated 458 plate appearances last season. In that span, he hit .262/.326/.470 with 17 home runs.

While Goodwin took a big step forward in 2020, his 109 wRC+ and 1.9 fWAR were only slightly better than replacement value. He earned his spot in the lineup, but he also left a little room for improvement.

Goodwin has two seasons of arbitration eligibility left, so he has some value to the Angels should he continue to improve. However, his seat will certainly be hot in 2020. The Angels will love to see him repeat or improve in 2020, but they also know that they have uber-prospect Jo Adell waiting in the wings.

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Any slip from Goodwin in 2020 and he will be relegated to the bench, and the time of Adell will begin. That makes Brian Goodwin the most-watched player in the Angels’ lineup this season