LA Angels Weekend News Crash: Unanimous!

First thing’s first: we all witnessed history in 2021. Not just “normal” history like every MLB year. I’m talking about a year that will be discussed by the grandkids of our grandkids. The type of thing we can brag about seeing for the rest of our lives.

And yesterday the BBWAA did the only sensible thing. They awarded Shohei Ohtani the MVP in a historic unanimous vote.

While we here at CtPG have been rolling out our annual armchair GM series, real GM’s across baseball have been busy handing out some serious coin. Especially to pitchers coming off Tommy John surgery.

I wonder if kids 20 years from now will even know Tommy John was a pitcher. I’m betting they won’t know why cashiers are called cashiers. After all, they will likely never see cash.

The Angels handed out $21 million to Noah “Thor” Syndergaard. He’s two years removed from his TJ and hopefully back to health.

How did this unexpected signing happen? Angels GM Perry Minasian flew across the country, bought Thor dinner, and explained how they’d both use him and try to keep him healthy. He was so wooed he didn’t even give the Mets a chance to match the offer.

That’s a really great link there. Lots of information on both parties and another crack at the Mets. And while I definitely have my reservations regarding Thor’s health, these numbers below show the upside.

Ken Rosenthal had a less chipper take on the deal.

Speaking of the Mets, they can now welcome highly athletic football players as first round draft picks and relievers chosen solely for velocity. Yes, they named Billy Eppler as their new GM.

The Mets couldn’t call Eppler their first choice. Or second. Or third. But they did manage to call him “unbelievably competent” which is as underwhelming of a compliment as I’ve ever heard.

Justin Verlander, another pitcher recovering from Tommy John surgery, also declined to accept his Qualifying Offer. Instead he went back to the Asterisks for two years and $50 million. Unless, of course, you count his ability to opt out of the deal next Fall. So really it is one year and $25 million unless he sucks this year.

Interesting note. Back when Tommy John had Tommy John surgery it was estimated he had a 1% shot of returning to the majors. Now almost 85% of the pitchers who undergo the procedure are back after a year of recovery.

Not all news was about pitchers with new elbow ligaments. Jose Berrios signed a massive extension in Toronto.

Bakersfield’s own Corbin Burnes won the NL Cy Young Award.

Brandon Belt decided to stay with the Giants and was the only player issued a Qualifying Offer to accept it. With Buster Posey’s retirement, Belt is now the longest tenured Giant.

Meanwhile, the Dodgers are having a pivotal off season. The unresolved issue of Trevor Bauer is only complicating it. They have a loaded free agent class and $64 million owed to a guy who may or may not collect it.

If the Angels were to sign just one of the Dodgers free agents, which would you want? Seager, Scherzer, Taylor, Jansen, or Kershaw? In reality, Jansen. Spending like drunken sailors, though, I could argue either of the first two.

In more general baseball links, Cedric Mullins had a breakout 30 HR, 30 SB season for Baltimore in 2021. What did previous 30/30 guys do the following year?

I’m not much of a hockey fan but I’ll generally root for all teams Pittsburgh. That will change if the Roid Sux complete their deal to buy the Penguins.

The doofus in the commissioner’s chair stated the obvious.

Finally, he’s a cheating a-hole but he’s not wrong:

Enjoy your weekend and post anything I miss. If you have a side in USC/UCLA enjoy. Me, I’ll be watching a scintillating fight card on ESPN at 4 and the Crawford/Porter fight on PPV at 6. It is impossible for either of those two to be in a dull fight.

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Eric_in_Portland
Super Member
5 days ago

Q signs with the Pirates. 1 yr, $2mil

So that’s amazing.

Mia
Super Member
Mia
5 days ago

Imagine signing the cast-offs of a team known for signing cast-offs almost exclusively

Yikes

Commander_Nate
Member
Trusted Member
5 days ago

I don’t have an Athletic sub, but from those first couple paragraphs it seems like Rosenthal’s bowtie is cutting circulation to his brain again and the “exec” he interviewed is probably some bitter Mets underling.

Thor is going to be part of a six-man rotation. We also drafted like 12 guys this summer who could be high-leverage and/or multi-inning bullpen contributors by next summer. We don’t need him to go 180+ innings and he was explicitly signed with that in mind.

red floyd
Super Member
6 days ago

Why is Perry sad in the picture? And I mean an Angels reason, not a Phineas and Ferb as aired reason.

Senator_John_Blutarsky
Super Member
Reply to  red floyd

Thor’s signing maxed out Arte’s credit card.

gitchogritchoffmypettis
Super Member

It would be kind of awesome if Arte put player contracts on a credit card.

red floyd
Super Member
4 days ago

Back in the late ’80s, my sister was at CU in Boulder, and her car died. My dad told her to go to a Hyundai dealer (they had just entered the US market) and test drive an Excel.

She wound up putting the car ($4995) on Dad’s credit card.

smithy610
Member
6 days ago

Someday, MLB analysts who are not alive today will romanticize Shohei’s MVP season the way people now romanticize Babe Ruth even without seeing him play.

What a time to be alive! One of the truly greatest seasons of a player in all of sports, not just baseball.

Last edited 6 days ago by smithy610
Cowboy26
Super Member
7 days ago
gitchogritchoffmypettis
Super Member
Reply to  Cowboy26

Fine. It’s fine. You know who doesn’t give a shit? Nick Adenhart.

steelgolf
Super Member
7 days ago
Reply to  Cowboy26

I’m fine with it.

red floyd
Super Member
6 days ago
Reply to  Cowboy26

It’s not unprecedented… Lyman Bostock’s 10 has been worn many time (currently by JUp).

And Thor said the right things about it, too.

Twebur
Super Member
6 days ago
Reply to  Cowboy26

Only thing I question is why he went on the radio with Lodge?
Should have came here.

Last edited 6 days ago by Twebur
Senator_John_Blutarsky
Super Member

Michael Stefanic was not protected and is eligible to be selected in Rule 5 Draft.

“The Plumber’s” fan club may be finally leaving the building.

Last edited 7 days ago by Senator_John_Blutarsky
gitchogritchoffmypettis
Super Member

Nah. I have faith he’ll still be around in March. Peguero was more likely to be snatched up and tested in some Bullpen in Baltoburgh.

Twebur
Super Member
7 days ago

If he’s selected. A’s, M’s or Rangers……….just because… Angels.

gitchogritchoffmypettis
Super Member
Reply to  Twebur

I wish he could play SS. I’d like to see him given a shot, I just don’t know that he’s good enough to shift fletcher.

Actually, who am I kidding, I do know he’s not good enough to shift a really good 2B off position… he hasn’t ever even played in the MLB yet. He’s actually less proven than Brandon Wood.

Twebur
Super Member
7 days ago

I was in hopes that after Brittney Spears was finally freed…..so would the Plumber.

Cowboy26
Super Member
7 days ago

I’m thinking the Angels are more focused now with the possible development of Brendon Davis as a shortstop viable utility player vs the Plumber. Davis is a 18 mos younger than Stefanic and hit for a higher OPS ( much more power) at both Rocket City and the Great Salt lake (albeit in a much smaller sample size) Defensively, Stefanic got limited defensive opportunities outside of second base while the Angels seemed to be so intrigued with Davis’ defensive abilities by the end of the year that he started the last 20 games at SS for the Bees almost mirroring Rengifo’s ascension to the Shortstop position at the big club level.

Twebur
Super Member
7 days ago
Reply to  Cowboy26

The new plumbers apprentice……Davis Plumbing and Heating.

gitchogritchoffmypettis
Super Member
Reply to  Cowboy26

Put more simply, Rengifo got called up. Stefanic can’t play short. Davis played pretty well there instead. I really liked that Davis went through three levels last year and didn’t seem to get phased by all the changes. He could sneak into being good, though I think he starts at AAA this year. He’s kind of fast too. He lacks grit though, probably.

Cowboy26
Super Member
6 days ago
matthiasstephan
Trusted Member
7 days ago

Yeah, you don’t move your GG candidate 2B off for a AAA guy who hasn’t even had a cup of coffee in the bigs – I don’t care how good his tryout video is.

Twebur
Super Member
7 days ago

Local Plumbers Union not going to like this…..

Cowboy26
Super Member
7 days ago

Elvis will not be leaving the building.

https://twitter.com/TaylorBlakeWard/status/1461833509685760005

red floyd
Super Member
7 days ago
Reply to  Cowboy26

Ladies and Gentlemen, Elvis is in the building!

Cowboy26
Super Member
7 days ago

T minus 3 hours for the setting of rosters for December’s Rule 5 draft. The big question is: Will the Angels leave the Plumber naked to other teams with his undeniable offensive talent but exposed cracks in his defense or will he finally get a chance to move all the way up the pipeline to the Show?

gitchogritchoffmypettis
Super Member
Reply to  Cowboy26

You still gotta love how Rengifo is a total waste of skin but Stefanic has “undeniable offensive talent” around here. “Undeniable” is a bar that’s gotten a lot lower, and I like the Plummer.

Cowboy26
Super Member
7 days ago

Welcome to TrAdition.

matthiasstephan
Trusted Member
7 days ago

No one looks at Rengifo’s numbers after getting promoted. He improved with the bat and the glove. So, while people remember the error in his second game after call up (in early Sept), he only had two in the second half (in 220+ innings) vs 7 in the first half.

There is a reason he is getting a serious look – and I welcome the competition with Velasquez, Davis, Stefanic and whoever else they sign on a minor league deal. He would be cheap, cost-controlled, and I think work well enough until Jackson or Paris are ready. (Just like I am happy enough with Ward as the 4th OF, and 3rd C on the bench).

It gives us room for more money spent on pitching.

Cowboy26
Super Member
7 days ago

He maybe the second catcher on the bench next year. After Wallach’s DFA the backup catcher role maybe a death match between Ward and Matt Thaiss

matthiasstephan
Trusted Member
7 days ago
Reply to  Cowboy26

Stassi can’t catch 160 games, even when healthy. We need another C, and I am confident we won’t run with just Stassi, Ward and Thaiss (at least into camp). Wallach wasn’t desirable enough to protect for Rule 5, and I hope (based on the stats I have seen) that he is camp fodder rather than a legitimate contender for a part-time C role.

Cowboy26
Super Member
6 days ago

I have and I will admit (reluctantly though) that Renny’s defense at short was more than adequate both in range and competency in his small September sample size. Even my Lylin’ eyes have told me that. Unfortunately those same eyes and data base have indicated how awful his defense was at other positions in the outfield and infield (small sample size noted) thereby limiting his effectiveness as a utility player. Despite Rengifo’s recent comfort at short his bat was still a disappointment. So unless he’s starting at shortstop and the Angels lineup can absorb a diminutive sub .700 OPS hitter who’s always swinging for the fences, Its extradition treaty time.

Twebur
Super Member
7 days ago
Reply to  Cowboy26

2002 might eat some Crow on this pick…..add him to the list.
https://twitter.com/JonathanMayo/status/1461792534162640896?s=20

gitchogritchoffmypettis
Super Member
Reply to  Twebur

But the new standard for now is did we get him for 10K dollars? No? Then Arte sucks.

matthiasstephan
Trusted Member
7 days ago

28th round prep pick. That still represents quite a find, even we did give him a bonus that represents about half of a league minimum salary.

gitchogritchoffmypettis
Super Member

Yup. It’s all totally normal. Prep picks, even late round ones, go to college for free. You have to basically pay them the money they would have made in a decent job over the next several years so that they roll the dice, skip college, and give this baseball thing a try rather than going to college and trying to bump up their pro stock while getting a degree for free.

But if you’re a true genius you only scout third world farm towns in search of starving teens who will sign for 10K because they would beat a man half to death for some KFC. According to some….

red floyd
Super Member
6 days ago

You do realize that if he gets traded, he’ll wind up as one of 2002’s nameless pictures, right?

red floyd
Super Member
7 days ago

I’m guessing the NY restaurant wasn’t Del Taco….

Cowboy26
Super Member
gitchogritchoffmypettis
Super Member
Reply to  Cowboy26

Impossible lies. None of this can be true with ol’Cheap n Evil still owning the team.

Eric_in_Portland
Super Member
7 days ago
Reply to  Cowboy26

Maybe we should get Bassitt. He obviously knows his baseball.

gitchogritchoffmypettis
Super Member
Reply to  Cowboy26

Lies.

OMAHALOFAN
Trusted Member
8 days ago

Question – “If the Angels were to sign just one of the Dodgers free agents, which would you want?”

My answerScherzer

Senator_John_Blutarsky
Super Member
Reply to  OMAHALOFAN

Agree – Scherzer

Twebur
Super Member
7 days ago
Reply to  OMAHALOFAN

Knebel….others too costly in amount and length of contract …not that he will be cheap.

DaveChalk
Member
7 days ago
Reply to  OMAHALOFAN

Probably in minority here, but I like Chris Taylor and just how many lineup building directions you could take with him. Probably overly worried about Scherzer’s age though considering we are mostly talking a 2022/23 window.

DaveChalk
Member
7 days ago
Reply to  Jeff Joiner

I’m really curious at what Scherzer is going to command now after seeing Verlander at 2 years/$50 mil (for all practical purposes). I would think Max has to get at least 10 mil a year over that?

matthiasstephan
Trusted Member
7 days ago
Reply to  DaveChalk

2/70 for Max? He is probably worth it, but who has that in their budget and spends that much in a year?

Is the market really larger than the Dodgers at this point?

red floyd
Super Member
6 days ago

MFY or Chowds?

gitchogritchoffmypettis
Super Member
Reply to  red floyd

That’s the trouble with the current pitching market. There is always just one really good pitcher available (Bauer, Cole, Scherzer, etc) and as long as one of the Sux, Yanks or Doyers want him he’s not going anywhere else unless he truly just doesn’t care about losing 10M.

matthiasstephan
Trusted Member
6 days ago
Reply to  red floyd

The Red Sox have less room in payroll than we do, even if they keep paying 205M a year. They have 167M locked up already, and lost people from the rotation and most of their decent pen pieces to FA.

If they sign Max to go with Eovaldi, Sale and Pivetta, that might give them better stretch for the season. And they are short handed after Houck.

Their bullpen though, losing Ottavino, Workman, Robles, Richards (whether or not you think he is a starter) is in worse shape.

Can they afford to pay 35M to Max and not solve the bullpen or replace Schwarber

gitchogritchoffmypettis
Super Member
Reply to  Jeff Joiner

You may even be able to carry an extra arm with Taylor on the team. If I could get Taylor and Loup for 2/3 the cost of Scherzer I’d do it.

Cowboy26
Super Member
6 days ago
Reply to  Jeff Joiner

You’re right. His defensive metrics at short ( at least this last season) are not very stellar

steelgolf
Super Member
8 days ago

Tommy John was a pitcher? I thought he was a famous elbow surgeon – Kid born in 2025.

BoyWithApple
Member
Trusted Member
8 days ago

How’s this for a non-Babe Ruth Ohtani comparison — Bucky Walters won the 1939 NL MVP as a great hitting pitcher. He won the NL pitcher’s triple crown with 27 wins, a 2.29 ERA, and 137 strikeouts while batting .325 and slugging .433 over 120 at bats!

In his first three MLB seasons, Walters was a third baseman. At the end of his fourth year in the MLB, he got into two games as a pitcher (7 IP, 1 ER). The next year, in 1935, he was used primarily as a pitcher (he played 13 games at second and third base).

He became a pitcher exclusively in 1938, and the next year he was the MVP of the league.

From 1939 through 1946 Walters led all MLB pitchers in BA and SLG and was used as a pinch hitter throughout his pitching career.

Senator_John_Blutarsky
Super Member

If Verlander “sucks” this coming season, the deal would very likely be 2 years, $50M – unless you believe he’d decline the $25M player option if he did in fact have a bad 2022 season.

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