LA Angels: Looking back on the Anthony Rendon signing one year later
By Luke Graham
December 11th marks the one year anniversary of the Los Angeles Angels signing star third baseman, Anthony Rendon.
Anthony Rendon added another big name to go along multiple time MVP winner and baseball God, Mike Trout in the Halo’s lineup. Rendon joined a team with the best player in baseball in his prime, a World Series manager with roots in the organization and a stable of young talent. Here’s a look back at year one of Rendon with the Angels.
Anthony Rendon was arguably the second most sought after free agent in the last offseason class behind Gerrit Cole. The fear with Rendon is a repeat of the Albert Pujols contract. While the likelihood of that repeating itself to that extent are slim to none, the fear is still there.
Rendon came over from Washington after winning the World Series and batting a monstrous .319 in 2019 with 126 RBI’s and 34 home runs. His 2019 season was impressive enough that it landed him third in voting for the MVP. He updated his resume by adding his first all-star game and made space on his trophy shelf after adding a silver slugger award to it.
In 2020, Rendon would make his debut in an Angel uniform finally on July 28th against the Mariners and slug a homer for his first hit in a 1-3 performance for the Halo’s. He would struggle at the plate to start the season with just four hits through 12 games but then took off against the A’s on August 10th where he carried a 14 game hit streak through August slashing .432/.532/.804 with five home runs and an OPS of 1.336 over that time. Rendon eventually cooled off and would finish the season with a .286/.418/.497 slash line and an OPS just under one.
While it was a shortened season and the Angels missed the playoffs, Rendon showed that he could be the guy that came over from Washington. His numbers may have meant more in the eyes of baseball fans if the Angels could have fielded a better pitching staff to push them into October. Had that have happened, Rendon and his lifetime .282/.370/.479 and .848 OPS in October could have helped make the Angels a threat.
Rendon looks poised to go into 2021 still as one of the best third basemen in baseball. Between a solid glove at the hot corner and a bat that flirts with .300 year after year, so far it looks like the signing was a good one. The Albert Pujols signing will forever scar Angels fans and that is understandable, but that is no reason to think the same thing will happen to Anthony Rendon.
The Angels have a chance to make some real noise in 2021 and moving forward. They have already started working on fixing the bullpen troubles and hopefully they follow that up with fixing the rotation next. Rendon had a solid season in 2020 for what baseball was this year. A lineup consisting of him, Trout, Ohtani, Fletcher, Walsh for starters in 2021 will be one of the better lineups in the AL West. Trout, Rendon and the Angels can be a real playoff contender in a division that looks like it has the potential to be wide open.