Angels trade infielder Tommy La Stella to Oakland A’s for Franklin Barreto

With the trade deadline looming, the Angels have traded infielder Tommy La Stella to the Oakland Athletics for infielder Franklin Barreto, reports Ken Rosenthal from the Athletic.

La Stella, 31, was traded from the Chicago Cubs to the Angels before the 2018 season. After a poor first week to his Angel career, La Stella quickly endeared himself to fans with his newfound power stroke, as he hit 16 homers in an injury-shortened campaign. He was penciled in at leadoff on most nights to set the table for superstar outfielder Mike Trout. He was selected as a 2019 All-Star, but he fractured his tibia shortly before the game and was unable to participate in the game. La Stella ends his Angel career slashing .289/.353/.483 with 20 home runs and 58 RBIs in 108 games over parts of two seasons, all while playing a subpar second base. He learned first base on the fly this year and seems to be adequate.

Franklin Barreto, 24, was a promising prospect who was the key piece of the return in the trade that sent Josh Donaldson to Toronto. He ranked as the A’s top prospect in 2015, 2016, and 2017 before making his Major League debut in 2017. Barreto hasn’t done much in the big leagues to date but has only received 219 plate appearances. Here’s the MLB scouting report in 2017:

Barreto was coming off of an impressive pro debut when he became the key return for Oakland in the trade that sent Josh Donaldson to Toronto in November 2014. He’s moved quickly since joining the A’s system, making the jump directly to the Class A Advanced California League for his full-season debut and then spending much of 2016 in Double-A, where he posted the Texas League’s sixth-best average (.281). After beginning 2017 in Triple-A, Barreto, at age 21, homered in his first at-bat in his big league debut against the White Sox on June 24.

Report from MLB.com

Barreto projects to hit for both average and power. Though an undersized right-handed hitter, he produces line drives with a short, quick swing and demonstrates good feel for finding the barrel. His approach and bat path are geared more towards spraying the ball across the field rather than hitting for power, although scouts believe he’ll clear more fences with improved selectivity at the plate. He has slightly above-average speed and likes to run, though he still has many gains to make as a basestealer. An average defender at shortstop where he shows a plus arm but inconsistent actions, some scouts believe Barreto is a better long-term fit at second base, and he’s also shown the ability to play center field in the past.

Report from MLB.com

Barreto stands to benefit from more times in the Minors to refine his skills on both sides of the ball, especially on defense, though he showed during his stint in the big leagues that he’s already capable of making an impact with his bat. With Marcus Semien holding down shortstop for the time, Barreto’s clearest path to everyday playing time could come as a second baseman.

Report from MLB.com

All in all, La Stella was never a long-term answer at either second base or first base, and moving four weeks of him for a former top-50 prospect seems like a good move. It’s not a pitcher, but it’s something, and that seems positive.

(Photo from the Twitter account of Fabian Ardaya)

156 Comments
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MarineLayer
Super Member
3 years ago

I say play this Oakland guy every day and let him play himself in or out of our plans. Based on the way Oakland didn’t play him, he’s not going to be worth anything. I assume Billy Beane is just laughing at us.

PatrickNaN
Trusted Member
3 years ago

Meh.

JoseGuillenburneraccount
Member

I like it! Let him play SS the rest of the year. Trade Simba and eliminate the possibility of re-signing him. If we really want pItChINg then trade Fletcher. That’s the only way of getting a good arm.
If I was Billy Eppler (trade deadline/save my job edition)
-Trade Fletcher for top tier pitching
-Tank for Kumar
-Trade Simmons,Castro, Bundy, Goodwin
-sign Stroman in the offseason
– find a way to unload Upton/ move Ohtani to OF

-Pitcher in Fletcher deal
-Heaney
-Stroman
-Kumar Rocker
-Canning

Call up Marsh and have Ohtani DH/ 4th OF

I know a lot of it is fantasy land but it’s not too far fetched. I just know that even with Simba, La Stella, Fletcher etc. on the roster, we’re still the sorriest team in baseball and we’re not going to get better without giving up anything of value (Fletcher)
Free agent pitchers haven’t been taking the Angels money, unfortunately.

steelgolf
Super Member
3 years ago

You are fantasizing a future draft pick as a starter in 2021? Yeeesshhh.

Eric_in_Portland
Legend
3 years ago
Reply to  steelgolf

We don’t even know how Rocker will do after missing an entire year. We know 2019 Rocker was good, 2019 Leiter. But now? No clue.

steelgolf
Super Member
3 years ago

Both will need some time in the minors.

Eric_in_Portland
Legend
3 years ago

I hate the “loser” mentality I see here. It’s that “our guys don’t have any value so we shouldn’t expect anything good back”.

There is an aspect of being a GM that includes salesmanship. You talk up the good points. You don’t sheepishly say “well he’s a 4 week rental so I guess I’ll take whatever you don’t want”.

CBS Sports says “Surging As acquire versatile weapon in deal with Angels”.

ESPN: “Angels deal All-Star La Stella to As for Barreto”.

That’s how we should be talking up our guys.

eyespy
Super Member
3 years ago
Reply to  H.T. Ennis

Someone needed to look at the bottom line, and then the deal was okay’d

PatrickNaN
Trusted Member
3 years ago
Reply to  H.T. Ennis

I’m not at all sure that’s what Eric was saying, but I agree with you.

Overall, I think Eppler has been fine on trades, especially these marginal trades that don’t really matter, which is mostly what he’s done.

FA and drafting has been terrible.

Eric_in_Portland
Legend
3 years ago
Reply to  PatrickNaN

Annoying as Cashman is, he’s always talking up skank players and prospects like any team would be freaking lucky to acquire them. I’d like to see our GM do something similar.

PatrickNaN
Trusted Member
3 years ago

Make sense.

Rahul Setty
Admin
Trusted Member
3 years ago

“Hello, would you like 4-time All-Star and 3-time Silver Slugger Justin Upton?”

That’ll convince ’em.

PatrickNaN
Trusted Member
3 years ago
Reply to  Rahul Setty

10/250!

Eric_in_Portland
Legend
3 years ago
Reply to  PatrickNaN

Seeing what KC got for Rosenthal does show the market isn’t all that good for sellers.

Rahul Setty
Admin
Trusted Member
3 years ago
Reply to  PatrickNaN

=(

HalosFanForLife
Trusted Member
3 years ago
Reply to  Rahul Setty

We’ll throw in a first ballot Hall of Fame guy with team control for another year.

ihearhowie3.0
Super Member
3 years ago

The several years of control with Barreto is nice but he is out of options so he will need to evolve pretty quickly for this to net any kind of return for us. As far as rolls of the dice go though it’s not terrible for 4 weeks of LaStella.

Possibly a peek into the budget constraints for next season. Simmons gone. Rengifo/Fletcher/Barreto in at miniscule salaries.

Senator_John_Blutarsky
Legend
Reply to  ihearhowie3.0

He’ll be gone before the end of spring training next year.

Guest
3 years ago

I like this trade if it gives Walsh or Thaiss more of an opportunity to prove their value.

AnAngelsFan
Super Member
3 years ago
Reply to 

Why would it? Thaiss and Walsh both have options, so they can be sent to AAA, while Barreto has to stay in the majors next year. That means Barreto will be blocking Thaiss and Walsh from getting opportunities next year.

Guest
3 years ago
Reply to  AnAngelsFan

This year Walsh and/or Thaiss could take all of TLS’s playing time at first base. I’d like to give Walsh especially a better look this year against MLB pitching. Neither Walsh nor Thais have anything left to prove at AAA.

Commander_Nate
Member
Trusted Member
3 years ago

Obviously he was acquired to pinch run and actually score so we can win some of these dumbass new extra inning games. Not sure why everyone doesn’t get that.

2002heaven
Super Member
3 years ago

Nobody wants our players anymore
That’s what happens when you have a GM who’s a novice at scouting and talent evaluation. I say to Arte to go hire Jeff Luhnow and to hell with what the local media and the huge Pro Dodger fawning media mob in this town. If he can’t fix this mess then nobody can. Nobody else out there who’s available that’s better……..Period 😠  😡 ….

Last edited 3 years ago by 2002heaven
dontbatvlad4th
Member
3 years ago
Reply to  2002heaven

After reading The MVP Machine which covers quite a bit about how the Astros were run under Lunhow, there wouldn’t be a chance in hell Arte would do that. It would require him giving total control of everything over to Lunhow.

Last edited 3 years ago by dontbatvlad4th
Senator_John_Blutarsky
Legend

The team needs pitching. So of course trade for an infielder.

Thanks again Arte.

GrandpaBaseball
Legend
3 years ago

What did we receive for Noodles? A utility infielder at best and at best means if he can hit anything above the Mendoza Line.

We got our pockets picked and we were “tooken”, out of about 20 teams in the playoff hunt the best Eppler could do was Barreto? l guess we valued him to high by having him bat second in the order. Nah we didn’t over value Noodles, Eppler under valued him. A return for say the last bullpen arm on the A’s was to much to ask, because Eppler is clueless at best and incompenate at worse. Arte should of given Billy Eppler his walking papers a month ago with a replacement already to go. Hire Sosh as GM and we’d do better than trade a very good chip for for a player of less caliber.

steelgolf
Super Member
3 years ago

The way 2020 has been it wouldn’t surprise me if Scioscia comes back as the G.M.

PatrickNaN
Trusted Member
3 years ago
Reply to  steelgolf

Glove first catchers instead of toolsy outfielders? I mean, why not?

Turk's Teeth
Editor
Super Member
3 years ago

Still lost as to why anyone thinks even the best GM in the game could get an impact player for 27 games of a league average second baseman like La Stella. Not realistic.

More realistic was not getting anything for him and simply parting ways in a month.

steelgolf
Super Member
3 years ago
Reply to  Turk's Teeth

Unfortunately The Angels will now have to play Barreto, and we will all have to sit through the misery of no bat and possibly suspect defense until they jettison him to the waivers list and either another team rolls the dice, or he is sent down to AAA. I understand you won’t get a lot with a short term rental but why hamstring yourself unless you know of another team who has lustful eyes for Barreto and you know you can swing a trade in the offseason?

LAAFan
Trusted Member
3 years ago

As a fan this sucks, plain and simple. Watching his emergence was really fun.

Rahul Setty
Admin
Trusted Member
3 years ago
Reply to  LAAFan

It absolutely was. Dude became an unexpected masher. I only wish he didn’t get injured last year so we could’ve got a full look at what his breakout season would have looked like.

AdelitasBarTJ
Member
3 years ago

Big surprise. The only real surprise is seeing pushback and anger from fans! After all, message boards like this have been polluted for four years with an endless stream of “Eppler has done a really good job in spite of Arte” arguments….Evidence be damned!

WallyChuckChili
Legend
3 years ago
Reply to  AdelitasBarTJ

The crazy thing is it seems nobody has been looking at the returns for play6in resent trades. PTBLN or Cash Considerations. The market is soft besides the asking price for Fletcher and Clevinger

Rahul Setty
Admin
Trusted Member
3 years ago
Reply to  AdelitasBarTJ

Not necessarily: this community turned on him after the “there is no such thing as a bad one year deal” winter and subsequent tire fire of a 2019 season. Angels’ Reddit and other communities, however, are still very much on board.

Last edited 3 years ago by Rahul Setty
AnAngelsFan
Super Member
3 years ago

I get it. You can’t get much for a one-month rental, but I still think this move sucks. La Stella will definitely help the A’s and Barreto probably won’t help the Angels. There’s still a few more days before the deadline, hold out for at least a PTBNL to be tossed in.

I can’t help but think Barreto would have been non-tendered or DFA’d by the A’s and would have been available for free.

Brent Maguire
Editor
Trusted Member
3 years ago

I think this was essentially the type of haul you’d get for a month of a good, not great, 2B. Love Barreto’s tools, his age, the MiLB track record, and previous prospect status. I don’t love that he’s struck out nearly 13 times for every walk in the majors. Barreto is a complete wild card and the Angels developmental program hasn’t exactly been great. Buttttt the Angels have been one of the best teams in terms of plate discipline since the 2019 season began. They’re second in BB/K ratio since then, trailing only the Houston Astros. I’m curious to see how this process plays out.

DMAGZ13
Trusted Member
3 years ago
Reply to  Brent Maguire

Hasnt been great and horrific for a decade are two entirely different things. Isn’t his youth sorta cancelled out by his lack of minor league options / combined with inability to hit major league pitching. He’s supposed to get better on the fly.

Last edited 3 years ago by DMAGZ13
Fansince1971
Legend
3 years ago

If the team had outstanding player development, maybe I could see it. Take a guy with natural talent and develop him. But the A’s are WAY better at developing players than the Angels. So if they are willing to trade him for a one month rental…..

LaStella realistically had little trade value as a one month rental. But I think an arm, any arm, had more value to the team than Barreto.

Maybe Eppler has a deal in the works for a starting pitcher involving Rengifo as a trade piece. If so this makes more sense.

Last edited 3 years ago by Fansince1971
nishiogawakun
Super Member
3 years ago
Reply to  Fansince1971

That’s sadly my thought too. Would be a worthy gamble for a team with a solid development program.

WallyChuckChili
Legend
3 years ago
Reply to  Fansince1971

It’s crazy but we keep drafting raw talent guys out of high school and they seem to turn up on MLB top 100.

Senator_John_Blutarsky
Legend
Reply to  Fansince1971

Eppler has no plan. Do you blame the child who totals the car while driving, or do you blame the adult who gave the keys of the car to the child?

matthiasstephan
Super Member
3 years ago
Reply to  Fansince1971

I also assume that this means moving Rengifo. We almost moved him before the season, so having a back up, developing 2B in the minors (next season) to cover 2B if anyone gets hurt (and Fletch needs to move around) is a good move.

I think it means we have lost faith in Jam Jones ever being that guy (though competition isn’t bad).

We weren’t going to resign La Stella anyway. He would have needed to play 1B well, and there are cheaper better part-time 1B in every off-season.

Rahul Setty
Admin
Trusted Member
3 years ago

Barreto is out of options, so he’ll have to be rostered on the MLB team. After the deadline, I think you’ll see a lot of creative lineups with David Fletcher at many different spots so Barreto can get some reps.

I wouldn’t have hope re: Jam. The Angels have tinkered so much with his swing that I wouldn’t pencil him in to a full-time role at this point.

nishiogawakun
Super Member
3 years ago

How should I feel about this?!

max
Trusted Member
max
3 years ago
Reply to  nishiogawakun

Read on

WallyChuckChili
Legend
3 years ago
Reply to  nishiogawakun

Depends on where in the process of processing the trade you are at.

Just heard: WTF! That all we got? And not a Pitcher! Fire Eppler!

30min later. Well the trades this year haven’t been that good around MLB. But we could have gotten any pitcher like Eric Manoah

1hr later: I don’t like the trade, but I guess we will see what we got. Stassi trade seemed to go the same way. let’s see if his hitting starts off the Stassi way or the Max way

max
Trusted Member
max
3 years ago

Welcome Grant Green Franklin Barreto.

Last edited 3 years ago by max
GrandpaBaseball
Legend
3 years ago
Reply to  max

Yup.

rspencer
Trusted Member
3 years ago
Reply to  max

Christie would disagree.

WallyChuckChili
Legend
3 years ago

After the top pitching trade piece, Taijuan Walker was traded for a PTBNL, I wasn’t expecting much for our trades. Have been also thinking if the returns are this bad, we should just keep Bundy.

DMAGZ13
Trusted Member
3 years ago

Fuck Eppler , worst GM in the league. LOL at the Idea that he’s going to unlock his potential at the MLB level since he’s out of options. He’s not even going to out perform Rengifo and he’s stuck on the roster next year too. What a joke. In a season where we all realize our player development is atrocious you think we’re long to fix a prospect in majors. We already fucked up Adell! Fire this shit out of Eppler already. We need pitching even bullpen help. What a joke!!!

DMAGZ13
Trusted Member
3 years ago
Reply to  DMAGZ13

Here come the shittier follow up. Now we’re going to overpay the declining Simmons to keep Fletch at second, more ABs for Pujols and Upton at DH

VictoriousVIC
Trusted Member
3 years ago
Reply to  DMAGZ13

We messed up Adell? Man I want to know what you said about Trout during his first cup of coffee in 2011. Not saying he’s gonna be the next Trout but cmon man you’re reaching now.

WallyChuckChili
Legend
3 years ago
Reply to  VictoriousVIC

Pretty sure it went something like, Trout Sucks! We wasted a #1 pick on this garbage! Fire Ed Bane!

To bad Reagins was on the blogs that day

Last edited 3 years ago by WallyChuckChili
FungoAle
Legend
3 years ago

Tommmmmy! I did not like him as a first baseman and and I don’t think he will ever repeat a half-year like last. Should have got a player who could play right field.