Halo Headlines: Angels pursuing David Freese and Joe Smith, Vargas signs with Royals

The November 22nd, 2013 edition of daily news for the Los Angeles Angels including Angels pursuing David Freese and Joe Smith, Vargas signs with Royals and much more…

The Story: The Angels and Cardinals are discussing a David Freese trade.

The Monkey Says: This broke yesterday morning but not much has come of it sense. The fact that we are already 24 hours past the rumor strongly suggests it isn't going to happen. A lot of teams are going to call on Freese since third base is a need for so many teams, but the Angels do match up well with the Cardinals who appear to be targeting outfield help in the swap. The most likely name to be moved for the Halos is Peter Bourjos as he would give St. Louis a legit defensive center fielder to displace Jon Jay. However, Kole Calhoun is just such a prototypical Cardinal player that it wouldn't be a shock if they tried to get him instead. The important takeaways here are that Aybar is not on the table and it doesn't sound like any Cardinal starting pitchers are either.

The Story: Jason Vargas signed a four-year, $32 million contract with the Royals.

The Monkey Says: The Angels apparently were still in on him, but didn't want to budge from their three-year, $24 million offer. It is hard to blame Vargas for taking the extra year and it is hard to blame the Angels for not wanting to offer the soon-to-be 31-year old a fourth year, especially after shoulder surgery in 2013. This loss has some Angel fans upset, but I wouldn't worry too much about it. Vargas was league average and fully replaceable with similar pitchers for less total money. Besides, the Angels need to be upgrading over Vargas if they really want to contend in 2014. As for losing out by not giving him a qualifying offer, look at the $8 million average annual value on the deal and realize how attractive it would have been for Vargas to take the one-year, $14 million qualifying offer and then hitting the open market the next year to get a similar offer that KC gave him. Even if he had rejected it, the Kyle Lohse experience last year showed that teams aren't falling over themselves to forfeit a top draft pick to get their hands on mid-rotation starter.

The Story: The Angels are pursuing reliever Joe Smith.

The Monkey Says: Smith would make me very happy, at the right price. He is a right-handed sidearmer, which would give the Angel bullpen a different look from the slew of right-handed power fastball-slider guys the Halos currently have. Smith isn't even all that bad against lefties either, so it isn't as if he would be a strict specialist.

The Story: T.J. Simers doesn't think the Angels can legitimately threaten to move.

The Monkey Says: First off, they aren't threatening to move, at least not publicly. But he has met with officials hoping to build an NFL stadium. Simers dismisses those possibilities just because it fits his narrative, but Moreno has the money and the team has the lack of debt to privately fund a stadium in Los Angeles.

The Story: Josh Hamilton has the fourth-worst contract amongst MLB outfielders.

The Monkey Says: Only the fourth? Thanks for being generous.

Garrett Wilson

About Garrett Wilson

Garrett Wilson is the founder and Supreme Overlord of Monkeywithahalo.com and editor at The Outside Corner. He's an Ivy League graduate, but not from one of the impressive ones. You shouldn't make him angry. You wouldn't like him when he is angry.