Los Angeles Angels general manager Jerry Dipoto is looking forward to 2014. After some admittedly hype-filled winters in 2012 and 2013, Dipoto feels that the understated moves made by the Angels this year will make them a better team.
The question is, did he criticize himself in trying to justify his activities this off-season? He did at least a little bit, as seen here (quotes from Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com):
Our last two offseasons probably got a lot more notice and generated a lot more fanfare…Our belief and our hope is that this offseason was more effective in the sense that we have a complete and well-put-together team.”
If your definition of a well-put-together team is one that relies, in part, on two woefully overpaid, possibly-washed-up veteran sluggers and three unproven starters in their 20′s, then yes, the Angels are a well-put-together team.
To be fair, the Angels have pieces in place to be a playoff team with Mike Trout, Jered Weaver, and yes, Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton (if they both find consistency and good health). The young starting pitchers they will count on, Hector Santiago, Tyler Skaggs, and Garrett Richards, have dynamite talent if things click. Unfortunately for Dipoto, though, a more accurate description of his squad might be this: a team that needs a whole lot of what-ifs to break their way.
Maybe the Angels will break through and end up looking like the type of team Dipoto considers them to be, but it is hard to dub them as such the way things stand now.