Angels lose promising left-hander in corresponding move for Aaron Hicks

The Angels made the curious decision to DFA Kolton Ingram to make room for Aaron Hicks.
Oct 8, 2023; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Baltimore Orioles center fielder Aaron Hicks (34) celebrates
Oct 8, 2023; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Baltimore Orioles center fielder Aaron Hicks (34) celebrates / Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Angels signing Aaron Hicks raises a ton of questions about the outfield. Is he brought in to be a platoon partner for Mickey Moniak? Does his presence mean a trade involving another outfielder is coming? We know Mike Trout isn't going anywhere, but it feels like any of the other outfielders on the 40-man roster can be had to condense the roster a bit and fill other needs.

While the signing raises some questions for the future, there's absolutely nothing to complain about adding a proven veteran for some depth at a minimum salary. Hicks should be a very fine addition for the Angels, and if he doesn't pan out, they don't lose much at all by cutting him.

We don't know exactly what the plan is, but we do know that the Hicks move becoming official means that the Angels 40-man roster is once again over capacity. This means the team had to get rid of a player to add Hicks to the roster, and the roster casualty comes at a bit of a surprise, with the team DFA'ing Kolton Ingram.

LA Angels part with promising left-handed reliever to make room for Aaron Hicks signing

Kolton Ingram pitched so well in 2022 to the point where the Angels added him to their 40-man roster after the season to protect him from being selected in the Rule-5 Draft that offseason. Ingram was seen as a potential left-handed reliever who could really help in the future.

Ingram got his chance to make a good first impression this past season but failed miserably, assisting in blowing one of their biggest games of the season in Kansas City and posting an 8.44 ERA in five MLB appearances. For as bad as the southpaw looked in his brief MLB action, he had another very solid season in the minors making this a questionable decision.

The 27-year-old posted a 2.95 ERA in 45 appearances split between AA Rocket City and AAA Salt Lake. Pitching that well in difficult pitching environments like the PCL should not be overlooked, especially when Ingram fanned 11.4 batters per nine.

Parting with Ingram over someone else on the 40-man isn't the worst move in the world, but isn't the one that made the most sense for the Angels when he clearly had some solid potential and had only made five MLB appearances. It'd be pretty surprising if he goes unclaimed.