The other shoe has dropped in the Angels’ search for outfield help. Reports are coming out that the Angels will acquire David Murphy from the Cleveland Indians.
— Mike DiGiovanna (@MikeDiGiovanna) July 28, 2015
No word yet on the return, but this appears to be happening. Once completed, Murphy slot into a platoon with fellow newcomer Shane Victorino. In a similar role with Cleveland, Murphy has posted a 119 wRC+, so he has bounced back well after two straight down seasons. His defense has slipped some now that he is 33, but with Victorino still defending at a high level, they should be able to swap him out late in close games.
One added bonus for Murphy is that he has a team option for $7 million in 2016. If he works out, that’s a reasonable price to keep him at. If he doesn’t, the buyout is a mere $500,000.
This almost assuredly ends the Angels’ pursuits of bats, especially high end bats like Gonzalez and Bruce. It might even wrap up their deadline shopping altogether, though they might still pursue additional bullpen depth.
UPDATE – The Angels are sending Eric Stamets to Cleveland for Murphy
— Taylor Blake Ward (@TaylorBlakeWard) July 28, 2015
This is a reasonable swap for the Halos as Stamets is a great glove, but there are major questions about whether or not his bat will ever be good enough to reach the majors. If he does, it will be in a utility defender role, so this isn’t a big loss especially since Stamets has had a very difficult time staying healthy in the minors.