What we learned about the Angels offseason strategy at this year’s Winter Meetings

It's on you, Shohei.
Nov 15, 2023; Anaheim, CA, USA; Los Angeles Angels general manager Perry Minasian at press
Nov 15, 2023; Anaheim, CA, USA; Los Angeles Angels general manager Perry Minasian at press / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Well, that was underwhelming. The Winter Meetings have wrapped up, and most of the big-name free agents and trade targets remain available. The Juan Soto trade got done, Eduardo Rodriguez signed, but most of the Winter Meetings saw little to no action.

The Los Angeles Angels were among the more active teams at the Winter Meetings, but the two moves they made were rather small. They signed Luis Garcia and Adam Cimber to one-year deals to fortify the bullpen. Yes, these pitchers have been good in the past, but there's a reason they signed to cheap one-year deals. The Angels are taking risks.

LA Angels are revolving their entire offseason around Shohei Ohtani

It feels like the Angels plan is the same one they had last offseason. Try and surround Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout with as much depth as possible. Instead of searching for big splashes, the Angels are trying to find value on the margins and that's why they brought in players like Garcia and Cimber.

Both of those relievers struggled in 2023, but have really solid track records. The Angels are banking on them bouncing back in 2024, but that's not an easy thing to do.

The Angels have made it pretty clear based on how they've navigated this offseason so far that they're unwilling to make any big moves until an Ohtani decision is made. The reason for that is quite simple. The Angels could be paying him around or even over $50 million annually, which makes it hard to build a team around him.

If they don't land Ohtani, it feels like the Angels are going to spend the money they were going to spend on Ohtani elsewhere. Who they're interested in remains to be seen, but it's abundantly clear that their offseason plans as of this moment hedge on whatever Ohtani is going to do. Nothing big can be done until that decision is made. For the Angels' sake, please make a decision soon, Shohei.