The LA Angels should absolutely consider trading for these 3 NL pitchers

German Marquez (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)
German Marquez (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images) /
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Los Angeles Angels
Luis Castillo (Photo by Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images) /

Now let’s get into what the Cincinnati Reds can offer the LA Angels, starting with their ace.

Why the LA Angels should consider trading for Luis Castillo:

Luis Castillo has consistently ranked among the best young pitchers in the league since his debut in 2017. In that span he owns a 3.72 ERA, 123 ERA+ and 770 strikeouts.

Though he struggled through the first two months of 2021, putting up a 7.22 ERA in 11 starts, he completely turned things around and was one of the best pitchers in baseball from June-October.

His 2.73 ERA in 22 starts during that span ranks ahead of Cy Young finalists Zack Wheeler (2.93 ERA in 21 starts), Gerrit Cole (4.15 in 19 starts) and Lance Lynn (3.45 ERA in 19 starts).

What makes Castillo really special is that he manages to be both a deadly strikeout pitcher as well as a groundball machine. In addition to averaging 213 strikeouts per 162 games, he owns an astounding 1.96 GB/FB ratio for his career, including a 2.30 ratio last season.

Like Marquez, Castillo’s salary is ridiculously low for the value he brings.

Currently under team control through 2023 (his final year of arbitration), Castillo is due an estimated $7.5 million next year at the age of 29. For a guy who would be the Angels’ co-ace alongside Ohtani, that is an absolute steal, especially since comparable pitchers are likely to command salaries in excess of $25 million.

However, trading for Castillo is going to require a lot more than Marquez would need.

I like to call the following trade package the “forget about the future, we must win a World Series in the next three years,” option.

If the Angels really want to go nuclear here, this likely means dealing top pitching prospect Reid Detmers.

But that’s not all, as the Reds will probably be looking to add some young outfield talent with the hopes that they will one day fill the hole left by Nick Castellanos.

While the inclusion of Detmers here may keep Marsh safe, either Jo Adell or top outfield prospect Jordyn Adams will have to go. And you can bet that Cincinnati will want at least a couple mid-to-lower-level prospects to further bolster this package as well.

Needless to say that this proposal is ludicrous, but if the Angels want to maximize their chances of winning it all with Trout and Ohtani, this might be a risk worth considering.