The Los Angeles Angels made a slew of roster moves to try and help the team make a legitimate run at a postseason spot. Last night's game didn't help, as the Angels lost to the Astros to fall to eight games back in the AL West and six back in the AL Wild Card race.
Some exciting moves were made as Zach Neto and Matt Moore made their long-awaited returns off the IL. Trey Cabbage was called up to make his MLB debut. Michael Stefanic who had played really well in AAA all season long earned another shot to contribute for the Angels.
With the good comes the bad, and there was certainly some of that. Anthony Rendon, Sam Bachman, and Jo Adell landed on the IL which was frustrating to see. Also, somewhat lost in the shuffle, David Fletcher was outrighted once again. The once fan-favorite has been removed from the 40-man roster for the second time this season, and this time feels like it could be his last.
LA Angels infielder David Fletcher could've possibly played his final game with the team
David Fletcher became an instant fan favorite when he, a local kid, got called up 2018 for the first time. For the first couple of seasons he played in the majors Fletcher was just a gritty player. He played excellent defense, found a way to get his base hits, and often came through in the clutch.
The shortened 2020 season was his best, as he slashed .319/.376/.425 with three home runs and 18 RBI in 49 games. He even finished 17th in the AL MVP balloting. Following that excellent season, Perry Minasian signed the versatile infielder to a five-year extension worth $26 million, a contract he certainly regrets giving out now.
Since inking the extension, Fletcher has slashed .258/.292/.325 with five home runs and 72 RBI in 237 games. His defense was still there, but the bat had taken a steep drop-off. He never hit for power, but Fletcher was walking less and if he didn't hit close to .300, his bat wouldn't be good enough to play every day. Injuries have definitely played a role, but he's been healthy in 2023 and the production has still remained very subpar.
He began the season on the Opening Day roster and had two hits in his first 16 at-bats before being sent down as the corresponding move for Zach Neto. He wasn't only sent down, he was completely outrighted off of the 40-man roster.
Fletcher tore up AAA and was worthy of another chance with the Angels, and it looked like he might've been here to stay after a four-hit game in his first game back with the team. Unfortunately since then he had four hits in his last 25 at-bats and was just outrighted again.
The Angels chose to keep Andrew Velazquez on the roster in a move that I really do understand. Velazquez also doesn't provide much offensively, but is a great defender and provides a speed element that Fletcher doesn't have.
It's possible Fletcher gets another chance in an Angels uniform but barring another slew of injuries it's hard to see that happening. He was sent down even though the Angels have three different infielders on the IL right now.