The Winter Meetings are upon us and the Angels arrive looking pretty desperate. They watched everyone else in their division making all kinds of big moves and getting all kinds of play in the last two weeks. The Halos, however, haven't been able to hook up in weeks. The poor, desperate, lonely Halos.
The Angels need to get some action and they need to get it now. They'll be putting their Trumbos on display and offering up their Howie Kendrick to whoever is willing to look. Let's help hook a brother up and take a look at the rest of the attendees at the Winter Meetings to see who Jerry Dipoto can try and lure back to his suite for some sweet, sweet dealmaking. Ah yeah, it is about to get hot up in this stove.
Garza is the best pitcher left on the market, but he isn't the type of player that is going to get Dipoto slinking through the hotel kitchen and taking service elevators to get him inked. He is going to be expensive, probably netting a contract that will cost the Angels all their room under the luxury tax line, which is a problem given that they need to add two pitchers, not one. The thing about Garza though is that he might just be attractive in comparison to the rest of the market. He looks like a nine because he is surrounded by a bunch of fives. Get him back to your apartment and suddenly you realize that he is a seven. That's good enough to get the job done, but maybe not worth all those expensive drinks you bought him.
All the other free agent pitchers
Now, for all those fives I was just talking about. There are a multitude of pitchers that could find the Angels glancing their way. Bronson Arroyo, Jason Hammel, Paul Maholm, Chris Capuano and Edinson Volquez are all potential matches for the Halos, but that may not result in anything until closing time of the meetings or well afterwards. These are the little fish for Dipoto and indications are that he wants to at least land a medium-sized fish before he goes trawling for minnows to round out the rotation.
Boston Red Sox
The Halos and the Sawx don't have much to talk about. Besides, the Southie accent is such a turn off. There is no match here.
Tampa Bay Rays
Everyone is all hot and bothered for David Price, easily the belle of the ball. Alas, Price is way out of the Angels' league because they don't have enough quality prospects. However, after the Price trade goes down (assuming it does), the Halos could come back for some sloppy seconds by offering up Mark Trumbo for one of their lesser pitchers. That, however, assumes that the Rays don't solve their first base problem via the Price trade.
New York Yankees
After losing Cano, the rumors are that the Yankees are going to giving it up to everybody. They've already signed McCann and Ellsbury and brought back Kuroda. Now they've got money to spend and an opening at second base. Gosh, it seems like the Angels could be of interest to them. Howie Kendrick is a great fit for New York, but the problem is that New York is not a great match for the Angels. The Yankees are expected to spend a lot of time and money shoring up their rotation, so it doesn't jive that they would trade pitching to get Kendrick. If they do, expect Ivan Nova to be prominently involved though I'm not sure that the Yankees want to give him up or that the Angels would think he is good enough to get Kendrick in return.
Ah, if only they had met when they were younger the Angels and Orioles could've consummated a Kendrick deal. Instead, Baltimore spurned them for Jemile Weeks.
Toronto Blue Jays
These two star-crossed traders just can't seem to find a way to get together. The Jays have the pitching the Angels want and an opening at second base but for some reason there is no indication that they have even talked aside from an early November conversation about Conger and Iannetta, oddly enough. The catcher trade talks are dead, but perhaps these two teams will have a serendipitous encounter where their dealmaking can be rekindled.
The Braves are the abusive ex that the Angels just can't quit. Having already gotten the shaft from Atlanta one two trades in the last year, the Angels should be hesitant to go back for a third try. The thing is that the Braves are just so damned attractive. Recent speculation has cropped up that Atlanta could make a run at Howie Kendrick to replace Dan Uggla. That would be a Jerry Dipoto wet dream because the Braves have all kind of young pitching. Mike Minor and Julio Teheran are probably not for sale. Kris Medlen could be an option too, but a pricey one. The most likely target would be Alex Wood. Yeah, a little good Wood might be just what the Angels need.
For years, the Nationals stalked the Angels and Peter Bourjos. With Bourjos in St. Louis, their fixation has likely waned. Dipoto can go ahead and drop the restraining order because there isn't much cause for the Nats to make any late night heavy breathing trade calls.
The Phillies had interest in Trumbo at one point, but they are set now. They might come calling to try and see if the Angels want to take Papelbon off their hands. Jerry Dipoto would have to be in a pretty dark place to even take that call.
New York Mets
The memory of when the Angels briefly had Matt Harvey to themselves will make it just too painful for these two to even make eye contact.
The Angels and Marlins could've locked themselves into a hotel room and just traded and traded all night long, but Miami got impatient and went and filled their holes at first, second and catcher before the two could ever get together. Oh well, no Jeff Mathis reunion, I guess.
Detroit spurned the Angels' advances earlier this offseason, so there is nothing happening here.
Despite a catfishing attempt by a Cleveland podcaster earlier this offseason, there are no common needs between these teams.
Kansas City Royals
This is the one Angels fans have been lusting after. The Royals have a clear need at second base and have several young arms to offer in return. Unfortunately, they are currently being cockblocked by KC's interest in Omar Infante. The Angels better hope that they strike out there and then have too much pride to go slumming with Mark Ellis. The Royals probably aren't desperate enough to give up Danny Duffy or Yordano Ventura, but Kyle Zimmer could be in play.
Chicago White Sox
Chris Sale is suddenly a hot late entrant to the trade market. Surely the Angels will make a pass at him, but the price is expected to be similar to what the Rays want for Price, if not higher. The Angels don't have a chance with Price, so their odds aren't much better for Sale. However, the White Sox may not be in full-on rebuild mode, so they could actually have some interest in Mark Trumbo, especially if the rest of the package includes Kaleb Cowart and Mark Sappington.
Though everyone is hoping for the Angels to come up with a big impressive match at the Winter Meetings, Minnesota represents a chance for the Halos to bang out a quickie. The Twins appear to be in the market for a veteran catcher to pair with Josmil Pinto. They've come up empty thus far, but Chris Iannetta could be the match they've been looking for. The Twins seem to prefer a lefty bat for a more proper platoon, but the reasonable price of Iannetta might win them over. What the Angels would want in return is unknown as Iannetta isn't going to fetch the starting pitching they need, so this might be more of a case of trading salary for prospects. The Angels might be hesitant to give Iannetta away though since it would mean having to go out and sign a replacement.
St. Louis Cardinals
Been there, done that, still have a sore backside.
The Angels and Pirates have spent months giving each other blue balls in trade talks for Mark Trumbo. Either side would have to get pretty desperate to gve into the other's demands, but stranger things have happened.
For months I've been trying to dream up ways for the Reds and Angels to get together in a three-way… trade. The Reds want to dump Brandon Phillips' contract, but then would need a new second baseman. Who better to fill that void than Howie Kendrick? Mike Leake or Tony Cingrani would certainly be of interest to the Halos, the problem is that they need someone to bite the Phillips bullet first. Perhaps the Angels could bite it themselves and get Cingrani for their trouble, but they likely don't have the payroll flexibility to make it happen.
The Brewers don't appear to be buying bats right now, which is all fine and good because their best trade chips are pitchers that Dipoto gave away to Milwaukee in the ill-fated Greinke deal.
The lone reason for the Angels and Cubs to talk is for Jeff Samardzija. The Cubs are trying to pretty Shark up like he comparable to David Price, but he simply isn't. Eventually, everyone will check him out, realize he just isn't that attractive and the price will come down. Without Bourjos, the Angels lack a big centerpiece, but maybe they can cobble together enough of a package involving Taylor Lindsey, Mark Sappington and maybe Trumbo. It is a longshot, but maybe the Angels will get lucky.
The Angels have shown with the Callaspo trade that they aren't too proud to trade with a division rival, but the one guy the A's have to offer is Brett Anderson and the Halos just aren't interested in someone with that kind of injury history.
/Throws a drink in their face, walks away
The Mariners are suddenly the center of attention and looking to stockpile talent. If there is one thing they still need behind the newly acquired Cano, it is a big power bat. Mark Trumbo actually makes a ton of sense for them and the Mariners have young pitching to offer in Erasmo Ramirez, James Paxton and Brandon Maurer. Seattle might be too old school than to fool around with a divisional foe though.
Houston is suddenly acquiring big league talent, but they aren't going to give away good young talent to get it. There's nothing to see here.
Los Angeles Dodgers
The Dodgers are playing all hard to get at second base. They want everyone to think they are set with Cuban rookie Alex Guerrero, but there is no guarantee that they go that route. They could keep him in the minors or shift him to third. If LA decides they want to go that route, don't be surprised to see them rekindle the Kendrick-for-Zack Lee talks.
Oh man, the D'Backs have so much good young pitching that I am sweating just thinking about it. And now they want Trumbo? Given Dipoto's ties to the organization, this almost has to happen right? Jerry should know who Kevin Towers undervalues, so there is a strong chance that this goes down. Patrick Corbin is off limits. Tyler Skaggs is a guy Arizona is trying to trade, but it feels like Trumbo isn't good enough to pry him loose. More reasonable targets would be Wade Miley or Trevor Cahill, with an outside chance at Randall Delgado.
San Francisco Giants
Nothing doing on either side here. Moving on.
Another unrequited suitor. Trumbo makes a ton of sense for the Rockies, but the last organization you want to deal with when you need starting pitching is Colorado.
San Diego Padres
The Padres have claimed to be interested in Trumbo in the past, but nothing ever really came of it. They just don't have the pitching prospects that would catch the Angels' eye.