4 surprise trade candidates LA Angels should move to get maximum value

Painful as it would be, the Angels should make some meaningful trades.
Los Angeles Angels pitcher Patrick Sandoval
Los Angeles Angels pitcher Patrick Sandoval / Joe Sargent/GettyImages

It's not even Memorial Day, but it already feels as if the Los Angeles Angels season is over. There was some flirtation with a winning record early during the month of April, but injuries and a shaky bullpen have Ron Washington's team gasping for air less than two months into the 2024 season.

Mike Trout is out for next several weeks, Robert Stephenson is out for the year, and the Halos' bullpen has been abysmal. The ship is sinking quickly and it may behoove Angels' GM Perry Minasian to start selling some of the club's assets sooner rather than later.

Baseball fans have already seen some minor transactions, like Robbie Grossman's return to the Texas Rangers. The San Diego Padres, however, made a splash after acquiring Luis Arráez from the Miami Marlins. While it may not be popular, given the current state of the Angels franchise, LA could move some of the team's best players in order to get maximum value.

Tyler Anderson, LA Angels LHP

Tyler Anderson seems like the type of player that a number of contending teams would love to make a run at. A veteran left-handed starter will surely be coveted as the MLB trade deadline approaches later this summer. If an inquiring team were to offer the Angels a couple of mid-tier prospects, Minasian might have a tough time saying no.

Anderson's strikeout numbers are down this season, but the left-hander's WHIP is in line with where it was during his All-Star campaign with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2022. Trading Anderson this season would allow the Angels to get out from underneath his contract that runs through 2025 and get good value in return.

Patrick Sandoval, LA Angels LHP

The 2024 season has been unkind to Patrick Sandoval, but the left-hander's FIP would seem to indicate that some of the stats are due to misfortune and not so much performance. Sandoval does a fine job of keeping the ball in the park. This season, Sandoval's strikeout numbers are up and his walks are down.

So if all the peripheral numbers are suggesting that Sandoval is having an above-average showing in 2024, why trade him? Teams are starved for starting pitching, and a lefty like Sandoval with two additional years of team-control remaining could net the Halos a nice return. If Sandoval is made available this summer, there will be no shortage of suitors for the Angels Opening Day starter.

Jo Adell, LA Angels OF

Jo Adell is finally showing signs of the player the Angels envisioned when they drafted him in the first round back in 2017. One could make the argument that Adell has been LA's best player ever since Trout landed on the IL. But if that's true, why trade him?

Because with a player like Adell, you're always waiting for the other shoe to drop. Is his success this season sustainable or is it a mirage? Adell is enjoying a nice surge, but that's all the more reason for the Halos to dump him before this hot streak comes to an end and the 25-year-old is back to striking out 40% of the time. Dealing Adell right now is the perfect example of selling high.

Reid Detmers, LA Angels LHP

This won't sit well with a lot of Angels fans, but trading Reid Detmers might be the one thing that will help to move this franchise forward. LA is stuck in neutral. The Halos had the two best players in the sport for the past few years and couldn't even make a run at the postseason. What evidence is there that the Angels will do anything meaningful in the next few seasons with one of the worst farm systems in the league?

Detmers is the Angels' best trade chip, and there's not a close second. The left-hander has his flaws, but a number of teams would undoubtedly shell out a loaded prospect package in exchange for the Angels' starter.

The Angels currently have zero top-100 prospects, according to MLB Pipeline. LA's top young prospects like Nelson Rada, Caden Dana, and Denzer Guzman are all two to three years away from making it to The Show. The Angels could sell high on Detmers, who won't become a free agent until after the 2027 season, and reap the rewards of several top prospects.

Trading your top players is never a popular idea, especially in a market like LA. The fans in southern California want a winner, and they want it now. But the Angels have been a directionless franchise for far too long, and it's time for them to commit resources to the farm system and build the team from within. Selling off some of their top assets in order to get maximum value will accelerate that process.

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