Welcome to the 1st installment of the 2021 If I were Perry Minasian series, where CtPG writers detail the transactions they would make for their desired Angels offseason.
In order to rosterbate responsibly, guidelines for this exercise are as follows.
- Angels end-of-year payroll (based on actual payroll, not the luxury tax) shall not exceed $200 million, giving the GM about $45 million to spend during the offseason. More info on how we came to that figure ($45,011,906) here.
- Factored into that projected payroll are arbitration projections from Cot’s. These are based on MLB Trade Rumor’s estimates, so there shouldn’t be any discrepancies here.
- When possible, use contract projections based on Fangraphs or MLBTR estimates, as experts from these outlets have a better pulse on the free agent landscape than most.
- Trades must be as realistic as possible. One popular tactic among baseball fans on the internet is offering a bunch of players you don’t like in exchange for some you do. In reality, that’s not how trades actually work, so that’s off limits. The Baseball Trade Values site can be a good resource for a sanity check often times, but each team values players differently and their wants/needs/tendencies should be taken into account, too.
Remember, no one has a crystal ball. Trades should be fair at the time they were made but can look very lopsided in hindsight. People on the internet will probably pull these up two years later and laugh at you. This can be very humbling! That is the nature of the game. —RS
None, this is the first one!
My offseason priorities:
- Starting Pitching, duh
- Rework the bullpen
- Get ready to win in 2023
Everyone knows the Angels need pitching, and not just starters. Oh look – I copied that sentence AND my first two priorities from my article last year. It’s like Groundhog Day with this team. Last year, Perry set out to do something similar and well, he failed. Let’s see what he can do in round 2 – but while we wait for that, here is my plan.
Last year I went heavy on the trades but kept things a bit simple for 2022 with just one trade and some free agent signings. The problem here is we can’t fix the team in one season. There are too many holes to fill and only so much money (according to Rahul – and okay, every other season Arte has been owner). My plan is to make the team BETTER, maybe even a wild card contender if all the pieces fall in just right. But in reality, this is a build for 2023 because this plan still lacks some needed depth.
Non-tender Junior Guerra & Phil Gosselin
Not much to say about these two guys other than see you later. I chose to tender contracts to Max Stassi, and Mike Mayers. Stassi can stick around next year and Mayers was one of the decent pieces in the pen last year.
Trade Jordyn Adams (OF), Ky Bush (LHP), Kyren Paris (SS) to the Athletics for Chris Bassitt
Sure these guys are the #3, #4, #7 prospects on the Angels, but there is depth at all these spots in the system. Baseball Trade Values thinks this is a slight underpay by the Angels, but it seems like a pretty fair trade to me with Chris Bassitt becoming a free agent after the 2023 season and the Angels taking almost 9 million of payroll away from the money shedding A’s. Bassitt would make a nice #3 playoff starter behind Shohei Ohtani and wait for it…
Sign Clayton Kershaw
3 years, $66 million [+$22 million]
Ben Clemens at Fangraphs has Kershaw at only $18 million for one year. With his pedigree that seems unlikely to me. The average crowdsource has him at $23MM AAV for 2.5 years and I went closer to that number. I can see more than a couple teams wanting Kershaw for 3 years. He still has gas left in the tank for at least 2 seasons I think and the Angels need an ace – or at least another ace next to Ohtani. Ohtani/Kershaw/Bassitt is a nice punch for the season and a playoff run and is a big upgrade from what we have seen in this rotation for years.
Re-Sign Raisel Iglesias
3 years, $36 million [+$12 million]
The Angels need a closer and Iglesias proved his worth in 2021. The average crowdsource rate for Iglesias is only $10 million but that seems pretty low so I added a bit. $36 million over 3 years just may get him to come back. He’s the anchor to a slightly rebuilt bullpen.
Sign Blake Parker (RHP)
2 years, $4 million [+$2 million]
Parker will be 37 in May but his stuff still plays. I’ve always liked Parker and he’s better than most of the guys in the 2021 bullpen. He was on a one-year 2.5MM deal in 2021 but he’s getting older and the Angels could probably snag him for $2M AAV with a 2-year deal. He is no closer but could fill in nicely in the 7th or 8th inning and could close an occasional game or two when Iglesias needs rest. Last season he had a .158 BAA in high leverage situations.
Total money spent: $44.8 million in 2022
Offseason in Review
Is it perfect? No. As I said earlier – too many holes to fill thanks largely to a gaggle of 1-year deals last off-season. Upton is okay, I suppose, as a 4th outfielder – a VERY expensive 4th outfielder but you certainly can’t trade him with all that money and a full no trade clause. There are a few question marks in the bullpen still and infield depth could be better as well as our backup catcher options. Canning and Barria give you duration out of the bullpen and can fill in for spot starts. Additionally, the plan would be a 6-man rotation to keep everyone from blowing up over a long season – especially Ohtani and Kershaw.
Will the Angels be better? Yes. I think these moves give them a shot at a wild card spot in 2022 but they aren’t going to be division kings just yet.
I had targeted Jonathan Villar for infield depth but he would have put me 6 million over budget. Additionally, I had my eyes on someone like Mark Melancon to bolster the back end of the bullpen with Iglesias and Parker, but alas – that would have been 8 million too much.
Below, you will find the projected 26-man roster and depth chart.
Lineup (not in order)
- David Fletcher, 2B
- Mike Trout, RF
- Anthony Rendon, 3B
- Jared Walsh, 1B
- Luis Rengifo, SS
- Shohei Ohtani, DH
- Jo Adell, LF
- Brandon Marsh, CF
- Max Stassi, C
- Chad Wallach, C
- Jack Mayfield, IF
- Justin Upton, OF
- Taylor Ward, OF/IF
- Shohei Ohtani, RHP
- Clayton Kershaw, LHP
- Chris Bassitt, RHP
- Patrick Sandoval, LHP
- Jose Suarez
- Reid Detmers, LHP
- Raisel Iglesias, RHP
- Blake Parker, RHP
- Mike Mayers, RHP
- Austin Warren, RHP
- Jimmy Herget, RHP
- Griffin Canning, RHP
- Jaime Barria, RHP