These past few weeks I’ve been wondering exactly when the Angels were going to finally dip their toes into the offseason and make some moves, or at least have themselves involved in some tasty rumors. Thankfully (or maybe unfortunately) the Angels were finally thrust into the rumor mill with the Peter Bourjos-David Wright trade “rumor”. Now, I know that isn’t much because for one, it’s a stupid idea to pursue, and two, it’s a really stupid idea to pursue. It got me thinking however, how would we react if the Angels did happen to trade away a player near and dear to this fanbase’s heart. Do those players even have high enough value to consider trading them? What kind of deal could they possibly pull in? What kind of deals would the front office pursue, and would they even pull the trigger if the opportunity presented itself. Well, I’ve never seen this new front office work before, lucky for you a very close, and very imaginary source of mine happened upon ex-GM Tony Reagins offseason agenda, and boy oh boy is there some tasty stuff in there! Just wait until you see what he had in mind for the Angels this offseason!
See this guy? Don’t get your hopes up, if even Reagin’s agenda was real this man still wouldn’t be on it
Now, since Peter Bourjos was the most recent player targeted by the trade rumors we can start with him. Let me just get this out of the way and say what every other baseball writer has been saying, Bourjos’ value with the Angels far outweighs what David Wright could do for the team, so there would be no sense in trading for him. Peter Bourjos true value is often overlooked because his standout tools aren’t seen as impactful as the tools of a big hitter. However, that’s not to say that Peter Bourjos has hardly any offensive value, it’s a lot higher than what many people would initially believe. He is an elite defender, has surprising pop in his bat, and is a terror on the basepaths. He could make the perfect fit for an NL ballclub looking for a player that can carry his own weight with a bat, especially in a league well suited for hitters of his stature. I mean for chrissakes, look at the number jump Juan Rivera had when going from an AL team to the NL West midseason last year:
AL (70 games) .243/.305/.360 6 HR 28 RBI’s
NL (62 games) .274/.333/.406 5 HR 46 RBI’s
Not only is that quite an offensive jump, it’s an impressive feat considering he went from a hitters haven in Rogers Centre to a pitchers park in Dodger Stadium (you can check the park factors here). Peter Bourjos is tailor made for NL style skillset, his success with the Angels only proves that, and a move to the NL could bring a big improvement in numbers for Petey. Thinking about Peter Bourjos in the NL brings Hunter Pence to mind, though Peter does show a bit more speed and prowess running the basepaths. I could see him easily putting up offensive numbers similar to Pence, though Bourjos pop mixed with a hitter’s park in the NL would give him better power numbers. If the Angels saw fit to trade Bourjos, sending him to an NL club could the best bet in terms of package received and Bourjos’ future performance.
Tony Reagin’s Super Secret Offseason Success Plan: Peter Bourjos+PTBNL to Gamestop for Modern Warfare 3
Ahh Trumbo, how his value has skyrocketed so high since last year. Remember how Mark Trumbo was constantly brought up in trade discussion to his value being at an all-time high and he probably wouldn’t make a great Major League 1B for the Angels? Remember how I bring this up everytime I mention Mark Trumbo? Well after having a season worthy of an AL ROY runner up his trade value is booming, it’s practically BEGGING for someone to pay attention to it! But why, why would the Angels trade such a young talented 1B with such promise? Easy, it’s only two words long, Kendrys Morales and expendability. The Angels wouldn’t be trading Mark Trumbo now, no that would be counter-productive, what they’d need to do is sit on him until next seasons trading deadline. The Angels uncertainty with Kendrys Morales makes Trumbo far too valuable for this club, but if Kendrys manages to clear that up then the Angels have an expendable first baseman. That gives Trumbo a chance to increase his trade value, especially if he shows some decent glovework at 3B, which the Angels could then capitalize on to fill other holes in the club. Now, if he actually manages to settle in at 3B it would be a completely different story for the Angels, different in that he would probably be going nowhere, but if it’s just slight versatility he shows shopping him around will be no problem, the suitors would be lining up just for a chance to speak his name in trade talks. Where could the Angels send a big power hitting first basemen with a solid glove and weak OBP skills?
Easy, ship him off to the Dodgers, take a young pitcher or two off their hands and be happy Mark Trumbo still plays for the home team. It’s no question that the Dodgers need an upgrade at first after having to sit through a slap single, occasional gap power hitter in James Loney. The Dodgers are going to be desperate for offense after throwing all their money at Matt Kemp (smart), too much money at Juan Rivera (kinda dumb), Mark Ellis (dumber), and Matt Treanor (oh god why?). It’s obvious their next season is going to look bleak without any obvious upgrades in the lineup, and adding Mark Trumbo’s power bat to that lineup with do nothing but wonders for the team. He hit 29 homeruns in his rookie season, in a pitchers park, all while sporadically jumping around the lineup. If the Dodgers want to add lineup protection for Matt Kemp Trumbo is the way to go, slot him in the heart of the lineup and you have two bonafide power threats at a cheap cost. Mark Trumbo could easily hit 30-40 homeruns in Dodger Stadium, and as much as I hate myself for writing this trade proposal (which is a lot), it makes more sense then Reagin’s ever made as a GM. If Dipoto is going to make any trade moves this will be the way to go.
Tony Reagin’s Super Secret Offseason Success Plan: Mark Trumbo+Michael Kohn to Free Agency for Jamie Moyer.
Dan Haren/Ervin Santana
Now before we dive into this I should clear up that this isn’t a proposal for both of these players, rather it is an “either” type deal. What would make a trade of one of these players feasible is if and ONLY if the Angels manage to sign C.J Wilson this offseason. On paper that gives them one of the strongest rotations in the entire league, but it also makes either one of these players expendable. The real question is who would be the one to go. Let’s take a look at the contracts of both players, either one of them could hit free agency as soon as next offseason if the Angels don’t pick up their options for 2013. That would make them either a rental for a small market team or a two year deal for any club that has money it’s willing to spend on young starters. Ervin Santana, for one, threw a no-hitter last year, that brings his trade value up higher then it probably should be. He is younger then Haren and shows a high upside, though his inconsistencies make that hard to see sometimes. If you’re the superstitious type however, then you’ll be very happy to hear that next season is, get this, an EVEN NUMBERED YEAR. Do you know what that means? That means that Santana is set to have a remarkable season, one to surpass both his 2010 and 2011 campaign. Any team desperate for starting pitching (aka Yankees/Red Sox), could do a lot worse than Ervin Santana, especially if history holds true.
The difference between Santana and Haren would be Haren’s long track record in the Majors and his success level in both the NL and the AL. He’s pretty much done it all, played for small market teams, played with big time clubs, and has post season experience, good experience at that. He’s played in every postseason series possible, NLDS, NLCS, ALDS, ALCS, and the World Series; if you’re a team realistically looking at a possible trip to the World Series, but you’re not sure who you can trust in the postseason, then Dan is your man. Anyone willing to take a small risk and put up with Ervin Santana’s inconsistencies could bank on him as a top of the rotation starter. Hell, anyone desperate could take Santana on as a rotation leader and hope he can build on his past season enough to succeed in the position. Dan Haren is obviously the safer bet if your looking for an ace, but if you want to take a small gamble Santana could handle the challenge.
Tony Reagin’s Super Secret Offseason Success Plan: Dan Haren+Ervin Santana+Cash to the Yankees for Derek Jeter. Immediately sign to extension.