Why Tyler Wade is actually a shortstop upgrade for LA Angels

Sep 18, 2021; Bronx, New York, USA; New York Yankees left fielder Tyler Wade (14) singles against
Sep 18, 2021; Bronx, New York, USA; New York Yankees left fielder Tyler Wade (14) singles against / Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

The LA Angels have just traded for Tyler Wade, and many fans may not know exactly how to feel.

Especially considering that he was sent over for unknown cash considerations or an unknown player to be named later. When evaluating Wade, it can be tough. Many Angels fans probably remember him as the utility guy that never broke through for the Yankees, despite being a top 10 prospect for the club.

They may remember him as the guy who struggled to get consistent playing time, and struggled often even when he did.

But, there's more to Wade than just that evaluation.

Tyler Wade is actually a shortstop upgrade for the LA Angels.

Tyler Wade will be in the mix to play shortstop for the LA Angels with his 2021 teammate Andrew Velazquez, Luis Rengifo, and Jack Mayfield. David Fletcher will of course play second, or maybe they could even flip that. Bottom line is, Fletcher will play consistently and the other four will rotate.

While Wade was a little disappointing in New York, he had the best year of his career last season. And believe it or not, it was a better year than what any of Velazquez, Rengifo, or Mayfield had. It actually wasn't even close.

Wade hit .268 last year. Velazquez hit .224, Rengifo hit .201, and Mayfield hit .218. Wade got on base 35.4% of the time, Velazquez got on 23.5% of the time, Rengifo got on 24.6% of the time, and Mayfield got on 27.2% of the time. Wade posted a .677 OPS while Velazquez posted a .594 OPS, Rengifo had a .556 OPS, and Mayfield recorded a .659 OPS.

And it's not just who he is with the bat. He turned into one of the best pinch runners in the game last year. The Yankees put him in late in ball games all the time, and he stole 17 bags.

The other three stole 10 combined last season. And those 17 that Wade stole were for a Manager in Aaron Boone that doesn't typically like to send guys very often.

The speed along with the bat finally showing life last year is something to like from this trade. Let's also add that Wade isn't even just an infielder. He can play the outfield too.

He played the most amount of games he ever had in the grass last year--25 games. He's versatile, he's become a much better hitter than the other three guys we have at the position, he's got blazing speed, and he's made a total of six errors in his five-year career. Sign me up.

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He gives the Angels cheap depth at short, and now we can use our (hopefully) giant budget on pitching, like we wanted to do in the first place.