Angels miss prime opportunity yet again after Blake Snell signing

This is a deal the Angels should have been willing to give to Blake Snell.

San Diego Padres v Los Angeles Dodgers
San Diego Padres v Los Angeles Dodgers / Harry How/GettyImages

The Los Angeles Angels clearly need to improve their pitching staff. It was the case last year when the Angels went out and grabbed Lucas Giolito at the trade deadline, and it is definitely the case now with Shohei Ohtani in a Dodgers uniform and Giolito having moved on as well.

With the LA scaling back their spending and going through a bit of a reset, however, the pitching market seemingly passed them by this offseason. LA decided not to try and bring back Ohtani, and watched as the big names -- from Yoshinobu Yamamoto to lesser, but still useful guys like Michael Wacha -- all signed elsewhere, with little resistance from the Angels.

There was still hope that the Angels could still make a splash on the pitching market before the start of the 2024 season, however, as both Blake Snell and Jordan Montgomery were still somehow available entering mid-March. That all changed last night, however, as Snell inked a short-term deal with the Giants.

The LA Angels should have been bigger players for Blake Snell

It would be one thing if Snell was standing firm in his position in wanting a long-term contract like it seems like Montgomery is. Snell is legitimately awesome and is coming off a Cy Young win, but pitchers are super risky to commit long-term to, and a lot of the worst deals in the league are for pitchers (other than Anthony Rendon, of course). Just ask the Nationals how they are feeling about the deal they handed Stephen Strasburg right after he had a big year.

That said, Snell wasn't doing that. Once his market fizzled and spring training got started, he backed off and pivoted to having Boras sell him on a short-term deal that let him opt out and try free agency again. That one year wasn't going to be cheap, but getting one of the best pitchers in the league without torpedoing future payrolls to fill a desperate roster need feels like it should have been a no-brainer for LA.

Unfortunately, that isn't how the Angels operate. The Angels seem resigned to their mediocrity because they have an owner who is fickle with his spending and thinks that teams can win games without a pitching staff. Even having a guy like Snell available this late in the offseason is an anomaly, but he was available AND could have been had without a long-term commitment. This was a prime opportunity to energize a fanbase that is hurting right now, and the Angels just let it pass them by.

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