Could this outfielder make sense for the Angels at shortstop?

Oct 12, 2022; Los Angeles, California, USA; San Diego Padres left fielder Jurickson Profar (10) hits
Oct 12, 2022; Los Angeles, California, USA; San Diego Padres left fielder Jurickson Profar (10) hits / Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
facebooktwitterreddit

The Los Angeles Angels could use an upgrade at the shortstop position. With David Fletcher not showing much outside of a very productive 49-game sample in 2020 and Luis Rengifo not being a shortstop, that position is one that needs an upgrade.

Where to find that upgrade is hard to piece together. There were four really good shortstops available but all four signed elsewhere without a single rumor coming from the Angels. Insiders have said they're looking to upgrade at short but not much else has been said.

The best shortstop available is Elvis Andrus. Despite his outstanding tenure with the White Sox, he probably isn't much of an upgrade over what the Angels have. With the options being limited, the Angels could do something a little more out of the box.

Could outfielder Jurickson Profar be the answer the Angels have been looking for at shortstop?

Jurickson Profar was the number one overall prospect in all of baseball in 2013. He was deemed as the shortstop of the future for the Texas Rangers and was going to be the face of that franchise. Unfortunately, Profar never panned out in Texas and ended up in Oakland in a trade in the 2018 offseason.

Profar had played in 68 games at shortstop in the 2018 season for Texas and once he was traded, never played the position again. He's seen time at first and second base but has primarily turned into a left fielder. 146 of his 152 appearances this past season came in left field with the other six being as a DH.

Profar was moved off of shortstop because of how much he struggled there. He committed 13 errors in 68 games at shortstop in the 2018 season (and another 11 in 51 games at third base). His -8 DRS was atrocious and he's been much better defensively in left field.

The reason to sign Profar would be his bat. He's a switch hitter who can get on base at a high level. He was in the 85th percentile with an 11.1% walk rate. He also doesn't strike out much, ranking in the 84th percentile in K% according to baseball savant. He's a guy who can hit anywhere in the lineup and get on base while also providing some sneaky power (15 home runs in 2022).

The bat would be a huge upgrade but considering his struggles when last seen at the position and the fact that he hasn't played there in five years makes it a bad idea. The Red Sox, a team that has outfielders but needs a shortstop has shown interest in him, but the Angels are probably better off staying put than pursuing this.

Next. 3 reasons why the Angels will make the playoffs in 2023. dark

facebooktwitterreddit