The Los Angeles Angels are a team all in on 2023. They made that abundantly clear by not trading Shohei Ohtani who is set to hit free agency when the season wraps up. They doubled down on that by trading some of their best prospects in exchange for rentals. The 2024 team could look completely different.
Some pieces of the 2024 roster are set in stone. Mike Trout, barring something drastic, will be in center field. Zach Neto will be the shortstop, Logan O'Hoppe will be the primary catcher. These things we know.
What we don't know is how the Angels will fill the holes that still exist on the current roster. At 59-60, the holes are very prevalent and certain players who have failed to fill them are playing their way off of the 2024 roster.
1) Matt Thaiss is playing his way out of the LA Angels 2024 plans
Matt Thaiss has had himself a wild year. He entered Spring Training in a competition with Logan O'Hoppe for the starting catcher job. He got off to a roaring start but stumbled to the finish and lost out. His hot start did earn him the backup catcher spot, and Thaiss looked like he might've been gone very quickly.
A very slow start including a long hitless streak and poor play behind the plate put Thaiss on thin ice. Once O'Hoppe went down, the Angels had no choice but to keep him and hope he'd turn it around. Thaiss wound up turning things around and was their most consistent hitter for a couple of months.
Unfortunately, since June 1, Thaiss has seen his season turn around back the other way. In his 47 games since June 1, Thaiss is slashing .175/.299/.277 with four home runs and 15 RBI. He ended the month of May hitting .295, and he's seen his average dip all the way down to .224 right now.
When Logan O'Hoppe returns from the IL Thaiss will lose his starting job, but he'll likely remain the backup over Chad Wallach. However, for 2024, it's hard to see the Angels not upgrading if Thaiss doesn't start hitting again. If Thaiss doesn't provide much offense he doesn't provide much of anything, because his defense isn't anything to write home about.