The 2023 trade deadline was a failure of epic proportions for the Los Angeles Angels. Their decision to go all in wasn't an extremely popular one at the time, but it made some sense with the team in the thick of the postseason race and trying to win in their last guaranteed season with Shohei Ohtani.
The Angels traded several of their best prospects to acquire a slew of players who were expected to contribute in a big way to the 2023 Angels. The biggest deal they made was with the White Sox, acquiring Lucas Giolito and Reynaldo Lopez in exchange for Edgar Quero and Ky Bush, their top two prospects at the time.
While Giolito was a rental at the time, the signs were there for this to potentially be a long-term partnership. The Angels gave up a lot, had a clear need in the rotation, and Giolito is from Southern California so he could've been open to staying with the team.
Unfortunately, things couldn't have gone much worse for Giolito in an Angels uniform. He posted a 6.89 ERA in his month with the team, and the Angels lost five of his six starts. With the team collapsing and virtually out of contention, Giolito was one of six players placed on waivers by the Angels at the end of August and one of five who wound up getting claimed, as he wound up in Cleveland to finish out the year.
Former Angels starting pitcher Lucas Giolito signs two-year deal with the Red Sox
In free agency, Giolito was receiving interest from several teams as a potential bounceback candidate. He had a rough ending to his 2023 season but he's been a frontline starter in the past, and is one of the more durable starting pitchers in the game. The Angels were not one of the interested teams, for obvious reasons.
Giolito wound up signing a two-year deal to join the Red Sox worth $38.5 million. He joins a Red Sox team that you can argue needed starting pitching help even more than the Angels do. It's a fine signing for them, but one the Angels were right to ignore.
The right-hander will forever be remembered by Angels fans for that atrocious trade deadline. His ERA with the Angels was skewed in a big way from one awful start he had in Atlanta, but still, he was a far cry from the pitcher the Angels were expecting. Giolito was expected to be a quality number two starter to slot in behind Ohtani. It simply didn't work.
Giolito off the board doesn't mean much for the Angels, but it does allow their competition to focus on other starting pitchers that the Angels might be interested in. Hopefully, the market continues to move after this signing and the Angels get the starter they need.