The Los Angeles Angels have been the team making splashy moves the last few years. Trying to buck the notion that you cannot build a dream team, they threw big money at guys like C.J. Wilson, Albert Pujols, and Josh Hamilton. There’s just one problem.
It appears that they will try to be a bit more economical in their pursuits this off-season. They brought blue chip starting pitcher Tyler Skaggs back into the fold in a trade with the Arizona Diamondbacks for Mark Trumbo. They inked 41-year-old slugger Raul Ibanez to a cheap, one-year contract. And now they will look to free agency for a starting pitcher.
According to Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com, they will start that pursuit with Matt Garza, who might not fall under the category of an economical or savvy signing.
He has been priority No. 1 for the Angels since Jason Vargas slipped from their grasp, agreeing to a four-year, $32 million contract with the Royals. The Angels weren’t willing to go four years with Vargas. They probably would for Garza, but perhaps no more than that. He’s 30 years old, has been solid over the last six years — 3.76 ERA, 1.24 WHIP and an average of 175 innings — and isn’t tied to Draft pick compensation.”
But beyond Garza, Gonzalez lists some other starting pitchers who could come at a significant discount from Garza and still boost the rotation. Namely, they could look at the ultra-durable (and kind of strange) Bronson Arroyo, or they could gamble that Jason Hammel can re-discover the goods that made him Baltimore’s Opening Day starter last season.
They might be wise to go down those paths instead, but considering how things have gone, they are probably more likely to overspend again and keep Garza in the AL West.