- MLB Trade Rumors
- Best 2018 USA Bat Reviews
- ESPN MLB Statistics
- Best BBCOR Bats 2018
- Best Pitching Machines 2018
- Franchise Ball
- Brooks Baseball
- BYB Hub
- White Cleat Beat – an A’s site
- Baseball Prospectus
Will they go after a closer or bullpen arm?
– Anthony Madrigal Jr. (@tribaltony82) December 18, 2017
I don’t expect the Angels to go after elite closers such as Greg Holland and Wade Davis this offseason, but a lower-tier reliever could be a possibility. General manager Billy Eppler and his staff have shown a penchant for finding inexpensive pitching talent to fill out their bullpen, with Yusmeiro Petit, Bud Norris and Blake Parker being some of the most notable examples from this past season. The Angels proved in 2017 that flashy names aren’t required to build an effective bullpen, so I think they’ll try to follow a similar formula in ’18.
Do you believe the attitude in Anaheim is that they are done this offseason?
– Greg Rice (@gregnaughty) December 18, 2017
I think the major pieces — Justin Upton, Shohei Ohtani, Ian Kinsler and Zack Cozart — are already in place for the Angels, so I would expect any remaining moves to be more about supplementing depth. The Halos still need a fourth outfielder who can play center field, and they could look to add more bullpen help, but the bulk of their offseason shopping is complete.
Any chance the Angels trade for Realmuto, the catcher from Miami?
– David (@dsilva_714) December 20, 2017
I doubt it. J.T. Realmuto is one of the best two-way catchers in the Majors, so the Marlins should be able to reap a significant haul if they decide to trade him. It seems unlikely that the Angels would be willing to meet that price, given the state of their farm system. Plus, I think they’re quite pleased with having Martin Maldonado as their starting catcher. While Maldonado’s offensive production waned in the second half, the Angels believe he might be able to be more consistent at the plate next year now that he’s gone through his first full season as a No. 1 catcher.
Do you see the Angels signing any more starters or rolling with what they have in the rotation?
– Richard Souddress (@Rasouddress) December 18, 2017
I don’t see the Angels making any more notable additions to their rotation this offseason, as they’ve already spent a lot of money on upgrading their roster. Perhaps they bring more starting options into the organization by taking fliers on some guys, but I think they’re satisfied with going into Spring Training with Garrett Richards, Ohtani, Tyler Skaggs, Andrew Heaney, Matt Shoemaker, Nick Tropeano, Parker Bridwell, JC Ramirez and Jaime Barria on their depth chart.
Besides the durability of the pitching staff, what do you foresee as the biggest challenges the #Angels face entering the 2018 season?
– Myles Bridgewater-Jackman (@MBridgeJack) December 20, 2017
I think developing a two-way plan for Ohtani will be a unique challenge for the Angels, as they’ll have to come up with a way to give the 23-year-old Japanese phenom enough opportunities to succeed as both a pitcher and a hitter while also preventing him from overextending himself. There hasn’t been a two-way star in the Majors since Babe Ruth, so Ohtani and the Angels will likely be venturing into some uncharted waters next season.
As manager Mike Scioscia said during the Winter Meetings, “I think it will be an opportunity to use some creativity.”
Do you think CJ Cron will be traded?
– Chris W (@ChrisW1212) December 18, 2017
It’s possible, though I think a move is unlikely to happen before Spring Training, as the Angels need to have a better sense of how much first base Albert Pujols will be able to play before making a decision on Cron. Keeping Cron around also helps guard against injury. He didn’t seem to fit on the roster last season after the Angels signed Luis Valbuena, but he ended up appearing in more games than expected after Valbuena and Yunel Escobar both spent time on the disabled list.
Maria Guardado covers the Angels for MLB.com.