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Angels in a Winter Wonder-land

Posted By Bill Mahoney On Dec 10 2010 @ 12:21 pm In LA Angels Of Anaheim | No Comments

The Baseball Winter meetings are over and the Angels head home empty-handed. Before I get to the obvious, I will tell you that four American League teams did absolutely nothing in Orlando: Texas, Oakland, New York and, drum roll please, the Angels.

Most think the Angels lost out on Carl Crawford. I am in the minority in thinking they didn’t. Hear me out. Crawford is a dynamic player, one that can and will help the Red Sox. However, I think he is a tad overpaid. Signed for 7 years, 142 million dollars. The Angels reportedly offered him 5 years & 108 million. That’s a lot of money, no matter how you slice it. Remember, just Angels here. Say they signed Crawford for 143 million. What do you pay Jered Weaver, Kendry Morales, Erick Aybar & Howard Kendrick? Those players are going to use Crawford’s contract as a barometer to gauge their value. Weaver is already counting the days until he’s a free agent - and with Scott Boras as his agent you can bet the price will be astronomical. While Crawford might have wanted to sign with the Halos, pressure from other sources will tell him to sign with the Red Sox because that makes it better for future free agents. Makes one wonder, if Crawford is worth 142 million, how much is Adrian Gonzalez worth? Gonzalez is a Gold Glove defender at first, consistently hits for average and power and is in his prime. Angel fans may be asking that same question about Morales a few years from now.

Bottom line: I guess I’m old school, but I see 142 million dollar guys as “game changers” – not complimentary players. I know Crawford is more than that, but he’s not the guy that when I see who’s coming up in the 9th inning I go, “Oh boy, we’re in trouble”.

I wish the Angels would have gotten Crawford, so maybe I’m just trying to con myself into believing it was a good move that they didn’t land him.

So where do the Angels go now? I keep hearing Adrian Beltre, but you know Agent Scott Boras will want a Kings ransom as Beltre is the only real hitter left on the market. I watched Beltre play in Seattle, and he was offensively awful most of the time. Defensively, he was and always will be, a stud. Fortunately, for him, he went to Boston and had his best year since he was in LA. Now, was it the Park in Seattle, or did his play get better knowing that there was a big payday at the end of the year? He’s a good fit for the Angels, but at the right price.

Cliff Lee: Really, really? I would be more than shocked if the Angels signed the lefty. Not because he’s not awesome, but I can’t see them going 7 or 8 years, and upwards of 150 million to get him.

The Angels did sign Hisanori Takahashi. He will be a great in the late innings and as a spot starter. Nice signing.

Rafael Soriano would be a nice fit as the Angels closer, and it wouldn’t surprise me if it happened. Keep an eye on Bobby Jenks. Jenks began his career with the Angels. He still throws mid 90s and is good in the clubhouse. His weight was always a bone of contention in Chicago, so that could be one drawback.

I’ll check in with ya later. Go Angels!!


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