The LA Angels better be locked and loaded for the hot stove to turn right back on now that this awful MLB lockout is over. FanSided National Baseball Insider Robert Murray said in his latest column, 'Inside the Clubhouse: Top 6 free agents now that the MLB lockout is over,' that an agent told him “(free agency) will be pandemonium” now that the lockout is over.
Murray of course listed his six top free agents post-lockout, and brought up that two of them (Carlos Correa and Kris Bryant) have been connected to the Angels. As for Correa, the upside is obvious. He's one of the better shortstops in all of baseball, but his mouth and cheating past has created lots of character issues in his career that an AL West clubhouse may not be cool with.
Heck, new Angels SP Noah Syndergaard has already sounded off on how he feels about Correa. Winning the Gold Glove this past year, Correa would solidify what will be the best defensive infield in baseball if he signs with Anaheim.
Interestingly, the LA Angels were pursuing Kris Bryant before the lockout, potentially to play the same position.
It's the only reason I can think of the LA Angels signing Kris Bryant for. Sure, he's not a player who plays shortstop exclusively like Carlos Correa, but he has played short before, and that's the only position he would fit on the Angels. They already have plenty of outfielders, and while they can put him at first and move Jared Walsh to the outfield, that further complicates LA's surplus in the grass. For the record, I would not bring Bryant in.
It's nothing against his performance, as the four-time All-Star (and former MVP) is a career .278/.376/.504 (0.880 OPS) hitter who has plus defense and can play both the corners of the infield and outfield as well as short. It's just that it's not the right fit. He should be in the outfield or at third, playing his natural positions.
We already have a lot of money spent on third base and our outfield, so it's not worth signing KB on to the roster. After all, pitching is most needed. Many fans are enamored with Correa's bat as well, as he averages 105 RBIs per 162 games and has posted a career 127 OPS+ (just five points lower than Bryant's), and that's understandable. It doesn't change the fact, however, that regardless of if the Angels should pursue Correa or not, they should focus on solidifying the pitching staff first.