The Angels should re-sign Tommy La Stella
At $3.25 million in 2020 (before proration), Tommy La Stella isn’t a heavy earner in terms of annual salaries. So while the Angels may wish to save some money, there isn’t a major amount to be had by going with a cheaper option. As such, money shouldn’t be the deciding factor here unless La Stella’s market spikes drastically.
Rather, it will come down to where the club envisions itself in the next few years. The prospects on the way are still likely a few years from making an impact, and while Luis Rengifo is a good piece to have, he profiles more as a reserve option than a starter.
To me, it comes down to the Angels choosing between Tommy La Stella and Andrelton Simmons. The Halos won’t be able to re-sign both players, nor do I see them wanting to do so.
Simmons provides most of his value with his glove, but recent injuries have kept him off the field. David Fletcher has handled the position beautifully in his absence and has been a significant upgrade with the bat at the top of the lineup.
At $15 million in 2020, again before proration, Simmons is a costly piece to bring back, even if the Angels are able to negotiate a pay cut. Meanwhile, La Stella will come at a much lower cost and commitment requirement (two to three years). That will bridge the gap to the next group of prospects coming up the line. A $5 to $10 million cost savings can also be shifted to other areas of need.
While it is hardly a done deal, and the Angels will need to weigh their options, La Stella looks to like playing in Anaheim and the Angels appear to want him back. A deal makes sense on all fronts. That points to a reunion between the parties for 2021 and beyond.