Angels acquire outfielder Joc Pederson in blockbuster Mookie Betts/David Price trade for Luis Rengifo

For a while, the suspense had been hovering in the air, a little will-they-won’t-they dance that lasted for months. After Mookie Betts trade talks had died down, in the past week they resurged, and the baseball world waited with baited breath. Late Tuesday afternoon, the dam burst.

In a three-team deal involving the Los Angeles Dodgers, Boston Red Sox, and the Minnesota Twins, Mookie Betts and David Price will now don the classic blue uniforms, reported Jeff Passan of ESPN. After the trade, the Dodgers had an excess of outfielders, so they moved Joc Pederson to the Los Angeles Angels for infielder Luis Rengifo.

Pederson, 27, has mainly been a platoon player for the Dodgers. Although his stats against lefties are abysmal, he absolutely rakes righties, to the tune of an .860 OPS. As our Twitter page pointed out, his career wRC+ against right-handed pitchers is better than Anthony Rendon’s career wRC+. That’s some pretty serious pop! He was worth 3.3 bWAR in 2019, and his complete career slash line is .233/.339/.474/.813. Ken Rosenthal of the Athletic first reported that Pederson may be involved in a trade.

Pederson is also connected with Angels’ DH/1B Albert Pujols, as they both have a family member with Down syndrome. The two players have shared some touching moments over the years, and the Pujols foundation does a lot of work with Down syndrome in St. Louis and elsewhere. Now, Pederson and Pujols will be hitting in the same lineup.

Additionally, Pederson is currently in an arbitration hearing for his last year of arb. While he filed for $9.5 million, the Dodgers countered with $7.75 million. It remains to be seen if the Angels will settle with him or not.

As aforementioned, the Angels gave up young infielder Luis Rengifo. Rengifo, entering his age-23 season, got his first Major League cup-of-tea in 2019, hitting .238/.321/.364/.685 in 406 plate appearances while playing solid defense. He showed promise, and he will definitely be missed, but the Angels did have a logjam at infield. Rengifo did not figure to see much playing time in 2020. Dealing him opens the door to potential Andrelton Simmons and/or Tommy La Stella extensions.

The remainder of the Betts trade is as follows: Kenta Maeda will go to the Minnesota Twins, and Boston will receive MLB.com’s #83 prospect, RHP Brusdar Graterol, from Minnesota and outfielder Alex Verdugo from Los Angeles.

Photo by Ian D’Andrea from Philadelphia, PA

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DaveinSA
Newbie
2 years ago

I can’t wait to see the trade lines off of Cron after this, since we gave up (I think) one year of his services for the main piece in this trade.

Also, this trade feels like a trap. We get two pieces that fit well, only giving up a piece that was going to likely be in AAA to start the year plus a non-protected prospect we should not be too hurt by. I’m a devil’s advocate by nature, so I am trying to figure out how this hurts us. Rengifo becomes Altuve-lite? PTBNL becomes future version of Joc Pederson? Not exactly nightmare scenarios…

Mia
Legend
Mia
2 years ago
Reply to  DaveinSA

Even though everyone says no, i’m still terrified the prospect is going to be Marsh.

BartonSpringsMatt
Member
2 years ago
Reply to  Mia

Finally able to log in!

And yes I fear it’s Marsh too. That Pages guy is a real prospect piece, they wouldn’t have thrown him in for nothing.

DaveinSA
Newbie
2 years ago
Reply to  Mia

I like Marsh as well, but isn’t he fairly blocked for us? Seems like most around here have thought of him as the LF of the future (or CF with Trout moving to LF due to all our fat shaming coming true). For 3 years of starting pitching in our once a week system keeping Stripling healthy and productive, I’m pretty sure I would like that move still. That’s taking out the Joc for Rengifo, but I’m not that big on Rengifo. I think he’s a flash in the pan and we got a hot season in the minors from him and are selling high.

Also, even if we find the need to move Upton to 1B sooner rather than later, seems like a corner outfield spot is not the hardest position to fill.

TL:DR Don’t be terrified Mia!

BartonSpringsMatt
Member
2 years ago
Reply to  DaveinSA

I can’t imagine we got Joc for Rengifo

When do we find out who we traded? What a nightmare news release?! We get some headline that only mentions the major league players, which of course looks like a no brainer for the Angels. Then casually mentions a Single A blue chip prospect from the Dodgers gets thrown in. We’re being slow played. We “win” now. But of course we lose if it’s Adell we traded. We also lose if it’s Marsh. We probably lose if it’s Jackson. We have a lively discussion if it’s Adams. This is the worst offseason news ever.

Andyman001
Newbie
2 years ago

Glad I found you guys.
I like what you’ve don with the place

Charles Sutton
Editor
Super Member
2 years ago

Jeff Passan is also saying the deal will go through one way or another. Boston and Los Angeles are dedicated to working around the Graterol situation. https://www.espn.com/mlb/story/_/id/28644920/sources-prospect-health-holds-3-team-trade-involving-mookie-betts

HalosFanForLife
Trusted Member
2 years ago

Looks like Stripling and Andy Pages too. Stripling seems like another piece added to the puzzle. It’s a long way away and you never know, but Pages might have potential. He had a nice Rookie advanced season. From Adam Tulley (Texas League correspondent):

Andy Pages, OF (LAD) – #26 on Daniel Preciado’s Dodgers Top 50
Age: 19
Highest Level: Rookie Adv.
Fantrax Owned: 19%
Andy Pages was one of the most impressive hitters in the Pioneer League, boasting a .298/.398/.651 slash. While the Pioneer league is notorious for offensive output, Pages was on another level compared to his age-appropriate competition. As an 18-year-old, Pages led the league in doubles and was second in home runs, leading to a very promising potential as a power hitter. Even if this is lower-level production, Andy Pages is a guy worth rostering due to sheer upside alone.

JackFrost
Super Member
2 years ago

Okay, at least Stripling has a sub 4.00 ERA. He only pitched 90 innings in 2019 however. Not sure we can count on him as a consistent SP. I would not mind it if Maddon gets creative in using him; for instance as a spot starter and a high leverage bullpen guy in middle innings. If we need a few big outs in the 5th and 6th inning he could be our guy. This kind of fits in with the Brewers philosophy, which in some ways Billy seems to be trying to emulate.

GotToPayTheTrollToll
Newbie
2 years ago

Word on the street is that the Betts trade, and by extension the Pederson trade, is being held up by Brusdar Graterol not passing his physical. The Twins and Red Sox might have to find a way to restructure the deal to get this done.

gitchogritchoffmypettis
Legend

I for one will look forward to figuring out how exactly Eppler screwed this trade up if the problem is an injury prone Twins prospect being deemed not enough by the Red Sox. I’m sure someone around here can find a way.

halofolife
Member
2 years ago

That’s a rec. I love continuing argumentative narratives.

GotToPayTheTrollToll
Newbie
2 years ago

It would certainly be on-brand for us. Fingers crossed we don’t get buttercupped.

halofolife
Member
2 years ago

I believe I told you on HH, but your name kicks ass.

GotToPayTheTrollToll
Newbie
2 years ago
Reply to  halofolife

Thank you, good sir! “Gitchogritchoffmypettis” was already taken so I settled for this.

Jimmuscomp
Member
2 years ago

Saw that too. Scary.

ShowtimeDynasty
Newbie
2 years ago

I like the idea of mapping out around 450 PAs for each corner outfielder

Imagine something like..:
Vs RHP

Trout
Ohtani DH
Rendon
Joc RF
Upton/Goodwin LF
La Stella/Pujols 1B
Simba
Castro/Stassi
Fletcher/La Stella 2B

Vs LHP
Trout
Ohtani/Tommy DH
Rendon
Upton LF
Pujols/TLS 1B
Goodwin RF
Simba
Fletcher/Tommy 2B
Stassi/Castro

Jeff Joiner
Editor
Super Member
2 years ago

Castro hits righties well. Stassi can’t hit at all. Castro should get most of the at bats vs righties.

Goodwin has reverse splits so he takes Joc’s place vs lefties.

I can imagine Upton getting a DH day or two each week, too.

ShowtimeDynasty
Newbie
2 years ago
Reply to  Jeff Joiner

Exactly. If this trade goes thru Maddon now has numerous lineup possibilities with weapons available off the bench for PH duties if needed. Makes it easier to keep guys fresh. If Upton shows to be on the downside of his career, we’re now insured.

TristanRaven
Newbie
2 years ago

And when needed for the outfield, we have this Adell guy in Triple A who could be called up, especially if for some reason Upton or one of the other guys goes down. It’s great to have depth and options in the outfield.

ShowtimeDynasty
Newbie
2 years ago
Reply to  TristanRaven

Yes. Also, I perceive a great deal of competitive fire with Jo Adell. I think constructing a credible outfield like we have (pending Joc finalization) presents our prized prospect with a great challenge to prove that he should be in the big leagues and will make him knock down that door with a sledgehammer. When that inevitably happens, Billy will have an envious “problem” to deal with.

RexFregosi
Super Member
2 years ago

i’ve seen people say this trade hurts Goodwin but i don’t think it hurts him at all

it really hurts Michael Hermosillo

GeoKaplan8
Trusted Member
2 years ago
Reply to  RexFregosi

And I doubt Hermosillo figures in the team’s plans except as AAA depth. He has presented himself as the Cowart of the OF, brimming with tangible potential, but turns into the invisible man when he plays at the big level.

matthiasstephan
Super Member
2 years ago
Reply to  RexFregosi

Looks like Hermosillo might need to be the beneficiary of a new system. I don’t see a place for him in the long term, and he didn’t take advantage of the shot he had in 2018 and 2019. He is still young (25), so could break out at some point, but with Adell, Marsh and others in the wings ….

Eric_in_Portland
Legend
2 years ago

of course it’s possible the Red Baron will put up similar numbers to Joc in 2020.

Also, speaking of the effects of moving to a different team, I suspect Betts will never again reach what he did in Boston.

RexFregosi
Super Member
2 years ago

he might not put up what he has done, but then again he can easily win the NL MVP.

Cowboy26
Legend
2 years ago
Reply to  RexFregosi

Excuse me, but Rev is not Panther . The Panther, however, IS Rev

gitchogritchoffmypettis
Legend
Reply to  Cowboy26

Anyone can Panther…. all should aspire to Pantherhood everyday.

Jimmuscomp
Member
2 years ago

Not really. The walk rates are different, and the extra $5 million isn’t nothing.

losangel
Trusted Member
2 years ago

Although he’s no longer a prospect I wonder if it’s canning that we’re giving up which is why the medicals are taking so long

HalosFanForLife
Trusted Member
2 years ago

I got to see Graterol pitch 7+ innings in High A a few years ago in FL. Good move by the Red Sox as they had to make financial moves, were going to lose Betts next year and Graterol has top of the rotation potential. Touches 100 with movement and excellent slider. Potential to be flat out filthy. I was sitting with about 7 scouts and everyone shook their heads on a few sliders he threw.

Charles Sutton
Editor
Super Member
2 years ago

In the bottom right is a little gray box with an up symbol. Clicking that takes you to the top fast. Reply fail to boyjohn and Eric.

Cowboy26
Legend
2 years ago

When do we expect the Panther to make its way to the new site?

RexFregosi
Super Member
2 years ago
Reply to  Cowboy26

the Panther is already here – he led us

Jimmuscomp
Member
2 years ago
Reply to  RexFregosi

Yep. It was his idea. He runs us all.

And Rev.

boyjohn
Member
2 years ago

Disappointed to give up Rengifo, who I really like, but this has to be seen as a plus at least for 2020. Just hope the other prospect isn’t anyone of note. Oh, and why is the comment box at the top instead of the bottom?

Eric_in_Portland
Legend
2 years ago
Reply to  boyjohn

I know! You have to go all the way to the top to find the box and by the time you get there you forget what you were going to say! Well….I’m speaking for myself, of course.

RexFregosi
Super Member
2 years ago
Reply to  boyjohn

i think the server is in Australia

Jeff Joiner
Editor
Super Member
2 years ago
Reply to  boyjohn

Cool to see you made it. I like Luis too. Played hard and can move around the diamond. I still felt like we needed another bat to deepen the lineup and another arm, though.

matthiasstephan
Super Member
2 years ago
Reply to  Jeff Joiner

Fletcher is better than Rengifo, imo. And we have enough promising prospects moving up that there is no spot for Rengifo to occupy long term (in this I presume we extend Simba). Rengifo was just blocked, and getting pitching for him is a win for us (what people have been clamouring for all offseason – with Rengifo one of the expendable pieces mentioned often).

JocsStrap
Member
2 years ago

i’m into this

Blackgoat
Trusted Member
2 years ago
Reply to  JocsStrap

This was inevitable, yet still unfortunate.

JocsStrap
Member
2 years ago
Reply to  Blackgoat

too blessed to be stressed

DowningDude
Legend
2 years ago
Reply to  JocsStrap

In the words of admiral Akbar: “It’s a strap!!!!”

Jimmuscomp
Member
2 years ago
Reply to  DowningDude

Lol.

gitchogritchoffmypettis
Legend

Well, I remember that, on some other Angels website, Jeff Joiner wanted us to trade for Pederson, and either he or some other smarty pants mentioned that we should trade for Stripling. So kudos to them, and obviously I am actually Billy Eppler, who is also Geo Kaplan, who both and singularly read these fansites and get all my trade ideas from them.

I actually think the pick up of Pages will be a really nice balance for us if we lose a prospect I like for the “unnammed” fella.

steelgolf
Super Member
2 years ago

Is that a picture of you riding a bear?

gitchogritchoffmypettis
Legend
Reply to  steelgolf

No, that’s a picture of me giving some shirtless Russian a ride to the nearest internet cafe so he can get up to all sorts of scheming.

Mia
Legend
Mia
2 years ago

Putin riding a bear somehow perfectly fits your aesthetic.

gitchogritchoffmypettis
Legend
Reply to  Mia

You want killer instinct? You want a win now man who gets shit done? Putin. Need to ensure you have a warm water port, wish you had the Crimean Peninsula? Putin just shows up and says “This is ours now”. How about a port in Syria? Even warmer. Putin can cram an Olympics onto some desolate, sewerless mountainsides prowled by packs of wild dogs and have most of Europe calling it wonderful cause they don’t want their heat shut of in January.

If Putin were our GM, DeGrom, Syndergaard and Nola would all be pitching for us this year and we’d have given up Cozart and Baldoquin. Also, half the wanker toads on the old Halos Heaven would have died from random radiation exposure, accidental drowning, and plane crashes.

Putin, the guy to turn to when you just wish someone would do something.

Mia
Legend
Mia
2 years ago

Other than literally everything about him he seems like a swell guy!

Too bad he’s a bit busy for baseball.

Jeff Joiner
Editor
Super Member
2 years ago

I’ve been really wanting Pederson. It’d become a joke among the staff. I see Goodwin as a risk and Upton’s defense was bad before his knee injury.

Joc gives us another plus bat and makes a good lineup and deeper one.

aces666high
Trusted Member
2 years ago

Sitting next to a couple of dodger fans in my training class who had no clue who Mookie Betts was. After our convo, they were still wondering if trading Peterson was the right thing to do. Sigh…

TristanRaven
Newbie
2 years ago
Reply to  aces666high

Casuals

WallyChuckChili
Super Member
2 years ago
Reply to  aces666high

Did you tell them that Judge Judy is on the Yankees?

aces666high
Trusted Member
2 years ago

Lol no but I did inform them that Betts won the MVP award in 2018, they were unaware. Sigh…

I congratulated them on getting arguably the 2nd best player in baseball behind our no argument #1 fat kid and went back to trying to stay awake during training.

Eric_in_Portland
Legend
2 years ago

Details! We need details! This is as bad as Iowa.

Blackgoat
Trusted Member
2 years ago

Nothing is ever as bad as Iowa.

Oski_Bear
Member
2 years ago

Lots of action for my first day of CTPG…did I get the acronym right?

2pints
Trusted Member
2 years ago
Reply to  Oski_Bear

lowercase “t”

WallyChuckChili
Super Member
2 years ago
Reply to  2pints

Depends on what masthead is writing. They have used both

ryanfea
Trusted Member
2 years ago

There should be a poll to settle it officially

WallyChuckChili
Super Member
2 years ago
Reply to  ryanfea

I’d say either T or leave it out.

USoA just doesn’t look right to me.

GrandpaBaseball
Super Member
2 years ago

I love this trade as it gives Maddon more moves and choices. Adell is ready now, but a few months of AAA will not hurt any. BTW Pederson also is a lead off hitter with decent OBP, won’t be surprised to see Trouty bat 3rd more often. Funny though, a few years back we couldn’t find a second baseman to save our souls, now we have still got 2. Pederson can also cover CF when needed. With a juiced ball Pederson can play long ball where Rengifo had the running game. Good trade.

DowningDude
Legend
2 years ago

I like Joc’s chances at hitting our RF yellow line as well. Although he doesn’t hit cheap ones, it wont take much to clear the line.

PedroCerrano
Trusted Member
2 years ago
Reply to  DowningDude

I watched a youtube of his homers from last season. Dude has serious pop as he missed a lot of balls that still went out at Dodger stadium. Only wish is that he hit lefties better.

Mia
Legend
Mia
2 years ago
Reply to  PedroCerrano

If he hit lefties better he would have cost more, or been too valuable to trade in the first place.

hockey_duckie
Member
2 years ago
Reply to  Mia

And probably helped the Dodgers win some rings, which would have prevented the need for Betts. LoL

PedroCerrano
Trusted Member
2 years ago

(AKA grahams98) Excited to get Stripling as well. Little nervous about what other prospects are leaving as this is a pretty big get.

GeoKaplan8
Trusted Member
2 years ago
Reply to  PedroCerrano

Trout.

WallyChuckChili
Super Member
2 years ago
Reply to  PedroCerrano

You got No Marbles!

Cowboy26
Legend
2 years ago

Trouty ain’t batting third. If Pederson leads off they’ll just bat Fletch 9th and the catcher 8th. Just like AK during the glory years. Don’t forget Soggy Joe made most of those classic lineups.

GeoKaplan8
Trusted Member
2 years ago

That’s kind of the point: The team doesn’t know Adell is ready. Only 27 games of AAA ball, played to mediocre results, isn’t an indication a player is ready for promotion.

He had OPS of .676 in SLC (compare to .944 at AA Mobile) and struck out abut 25% of the time. He also played CF in many of his stops in the minors, but is understandably being switched to corner spot in the bigs, and the spin off the bat is different. He needs to play every day in a learning environment. The level of play at AAA is significantly harder than at AA and below.

Fans get impatient, but it is worth remembering he was in Rookie League Orem, Low-A Burlington, and High-A IE all in 2018, and IE, AA Mobile, and AAA SLC in 2019. 6 levels in 2 years for a kid who isn’t 21 until around Opening Day is incredible. Give him the room to grow.

Jimmuscomp
Member
2 years ago
Reply to  GeoKaplan8

He’s 20. Agreed.

Time in AAA is great for him. He’s 4+ years younger than the average AAA player.

Time will help him.

GeoKaplan8
Trusted Member
2 years ago
Reply to  Jimmuscomp

I think we covered this on HH: The average age in Low- and High-A is about 21, almost 24 for AA, and about 28 for AAA. Adell by age should be in High-A (as would Marsh), but both will be AAA for the start of the season.

That isn’t about holding anyone back in AAA, that is an example of a phenomenal rise through the minors. He should be in AAA to refine his game and get the reps he needs to succeed in the majors. If that is 2021 when he gets the job full-time, it would hardly be the end of the world.

Jimmuscomp
Member
2 years ago
Reply to  GeoKaplan8

Yeah. I was thinking AA when I said 24. AAA is for a bunch of AAAA guys, and vets trying to make it back to the show.

Age is not a good determining factor in AAA except when you are very young for the league.

This trade basically saves them from any Pressure to rush him the first half of 2020. Which has value – and Joc is a beast vs. RHP. He should be the heavy part of a Pujols/Joc platoon at 1st.

HaloPilot
Newbie
2 years ago

Long time lurker, once upon a time poster under the moniker “halos2011champs” (Yeah that old prediction aged well)

Glad to have this baseball community, especially living deep in Texass territory.

Big fan of Joc and Stripling although his durability as a starter is questionable. Regardless, this puts in a better position than we were one week ago for the now and long term.

DaveinSA
Newbie
2 years ago
Reply to  HaloPilot

Don’t worry. Pretty sure Scioscia mentioned that 2011 team as the most talented he’d ever managed. I’m still mad about that ALCS vs the Yankees in the rain when the team just didn’t have it.

Howdy from a fellow Texan as well!