AL West Moves

A look at the moves made so far this winter by AL West clubs…

Angels

  • Acquired/re-signed: Bobby Abreu, Hideki Matsui, Fernando Rodney, Michael Rocco, Taylor Wilding, Julio Perez, Travis Chick, Gary Patchett, Cory Aldridge, Camilo Vazquez, Nick Gorneault,
  • Lost: Darren Oliver, Chone Figgins, John Lackey, Vladimir Guerrero, Kelvim Escobar, Matt Brown, Bobby Cassevah, David Herndon  

Athletics

  • Acquired/re-signed: Coco Crisp, Justin Duchscherer, Jack Cust, Michael Taylor, Dallas McPherson, Aaron Miles, Jake Fox, Bobby Cassevah, Matthew Whitney, Matt Wright, Marcus McBeth, Fernando Hernandez, Cedrick Bowers, Alex Valdez, Trey Webb 
  • Lost: Brett Wallace, Chris Denorfia, Bobby Crosby, Jeff Gray, Matthew Spencer, Ronny Morla, Jay Marshall 

Mariners

  • Acquired/re-signed: Cliff Lee, Chone Figgins, Milton Bradley, Casey Kotchman, Ken Griffey Jr., Brandon League, Josh Bard, Chad Cordero, Johermyn Chavez, Yusmeiro Petit, Josh Wilson, Corey Patterson, Kanekoa Texeira, Pedro Okuda, Ryan Langerhans, Chris Woodward, Guillermo Quiroz, Rich Dorman, Steve Bray, Steven Shell, Jose Yepez, Levale Speigner, Chris Seddon, Travis Denker, Mike Koplove, David Pauley, Ralph Henriquez 
  • Lost: Adrian Beltre, Brandon Morrow, Kenji Johjima, Justin Thomas, Bryan LaHair, Carlos Silva, Bill Hall, Chris Jakubauskas, Robert Manuel, J.C. Ramirez, Phillippe Aumont, Tyson Gillies, Roy Corcoran 

Rangers

  • Acquired/re-signed: Darren Oliver, Vladimir Guerrero, Rich Harden, Chris Ray, Khalil Greene, Kevin Richardson, Joe Inglett, Clay Rapada, Ben Snyder, Ray Olmedo, Geoff Geary, Matt Brown, Robbie Alcombrack, John Otness  
  • Lost: Jason Grilli, Ivan Rodriguez, Eddie Guardado, Marlon Byrd, Omar Vizquel, Andruw Jones, Kevin Millwood


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80 Comments on "AL West Moves"


leviticus6688
5 years 7 months ago

I wonder how many moves the M’s wouldn’t have been able to make had Johjima stayed put. I doubt they’d have gotten Figgins for sure. We might be looking at a very different ball club. However, I do think Jack Z. has done an excellent job in Seattle.

5 years 7 months ago

Man, the Angels have lost a lot more than they’ve acquired.

universalguru
5 years 7 months ago

On paper it looks rough for the Angels. However I’m a bit surprised by how nice of an improvement the Athletics seem to have made. I still would have kept Wallace but overall they look improved and they may still have money to spend after missing out of guys like Beltre, Chapman and Scutaro. That said… go M’s.

Cuddy Fox
5 years 7 months ago

The AL west got a whole lot closer then in the past few seasons. Now Mariners and Rangers have a better chance to knock of the Angels

JerseyJohn32190
5 years 7 months ago

The Angels are still the favorites but the M’s and Rangers definitely closed the gap. It wouldn’t surprise me if any one of those 3 won the division.

TVReviewsion
5 years 7 months ago

lololololololol the angels….

asfan2010
5 years 7 months ago

That A’s list would look better if they were able to sign beltre, scutaro, or chapman…rejected by all 3 LOL how fun

BK
5 years 7 months ago

Every year people knock the Angels (They didnt resign texiera or K-rod)…etc Yet they continue to watch their homegrown talent shine. I think the Angels come back close to as strong as they were last year and the Mariners still have no offense.

Rudolf
5 years 7 months ago

For the angels to come back as strong as last year, they would need, A) Ervin Santana to step back up while Weaver maintains; B) Kazmir to pitch like the 2nd half of 2009, not the year and a half before, plus stay healthy; C) Morales to play better than he was ever projected to play again; D) Torre Hunter to have another career year in his mid-thirties; E) The outfield defense to hold up; F) The bullpen to hold itself together.

that’s a lot to ask. Some of those things will happen, some wont, and there’s little doubt the M’s got better, (despite their iffy offense), and the Rangers could have improved, too.

I think the AL West is up for grabs, even if the angels continue to look strong.

saxonius1
5 years 7 months ago

You wanna talk about a lot to ask? How about looking at the M’s. What pitcher do they have after Felix Hernandez? Who is their middle relief? Who is going to be the clean-up hitter? Questions Questions Questions…

How about Texas? Did their pitching staff get any better? No. Did their OBP get any better or is their club still filled with a bunch low-average, high-power hitters?

Overall, the Angels are still the much more balanced ball-club.

Finally, E and F can apply to any ball club. Like Yogi Berra said: “The hardest thing to forecast is the future…”

We can talk about What If’s until were blue in the face…on paper, Angels still take it.

mateodh
5 years 7 months ago

“What pitcher do they have after Felix Hernandez?”

Cliff Lee?

saxonius1
5 years 7 months ago

obviously. Work with me people here… Cliff Lee, Felix Hernandez, then who?

TVReviewsion
5 years 7 months ago

They don’t really need anything after that. But really, Ryan Rowland-Smith, Ian Snell, bunch of other youngsters, plus they still have some money to spend on a possible risk/reward type (Bedard, Sheets type).

universalguru
5 years 7 months ago

Oh goodness this makes me giggle. What pitching besides Felix? Gee I guess all they have is some no name called Cliff Lee. Then there’s that god-awful youngster Ryan-Rowland Smith. I’m sure they’re completely done with the rotation too. Bullpen? Complete crap after Aardsma, Lowe, Kelley, League and the dozens of arms after them.

Clean-up hitter? Legit question I suppose, but I would count on this team scoring far more runs now with the huge improvements in OBP via Figgins, Bradley and Kotchmann. If Moore is worth anything he’ll be an improvement at catcher. I wouldn’t count them out for making one more move on offense though.

Questioning the offense I understand. Questioning the pitching is straight-up ignorant.

saxonius1
5 years 7 months ago

Really? Because if you look at the Angels rotation you have three All-Stars and a 16 game winner who shut down the Red Sox in the ALDS last year.

Seattle has Cliff and Felix, then…it drops off dramatically. Rowland-Smith? A guy who has only thrown over 100 innings once in his career? I think thats a bigger question mark than any of the angels staff and or bullpen…

PinchingPennies
5 years 7 months ago

After Felix Hernandez the M’s have Cliff Lee. He’s decent, I guess.

5 years 7 months ago

lol!
Cliff Lee anyone? Relief pitchers? How about Lowe, Kelley, White… Milton Bradley can work as their clean-up hitter…

Rudolf
5 years 7 months ago

Really? Those are the “questions questions questions?” Like mateo said, Cliff Lee comes after Felix, and until we gather a legit #3, Ryan Rowland-Smith. Our top three beats your top three. Middle relief is solved easily, especially when we have four stud late-inning relievers. Shawn White, Steve Kelley, Jason Vargas all are suitable middle relievers. Perhaps Ian Snell or Doug Fister, or even Josh Fields will round out the fold. As for clean-up hitter, that is an irrelevant point you make. The M’s don’t have a lot of “power” hitters, if that’s is what you’re saying. Lopez or Bradley or Griffey or Branyan… someone will hit 4th. maybe we’ll pick up a guy. But don’t you worry, Angel fans, the M’s will score some runs. Maybe not as many as you, but we won’t have to, either. These aren’t ‘what ifs’ anymore. Thems is the izzzis.

SmackSaw
5 years 7 months ago

I agree BK. The Angels have more pop. Kazmir makes up for Lackey. Woods is a great fielder. He’ll strike out 150 times, but he’ll hit 25 bombs. He’s sort of a return of Troy Glaus. Godzilla will be more consistent than Vlad. I like what the Angels have done.

The Rangers are better than the M’s. The M’s clubhouse is going to do them in.

not_brooks
5 years 7 months ago

It’s been interesting to see the A’s as the runner up in a few pretty major FA acquisitions.

If they’re willing to spend a bit of money, I wonder if they’ll stick with Daric Barton at first base or make a one year offer to LaRoche or Delgado. With what we’ve seen recently, I wouldn’t be surprised.

TheReturnOfMrBlanks
5 years 7 months ago

The reason the Angels win the division every year is the other teams were not up to their level, now it looks like a very competitive division and as a baseball fan you have to like that… I would never really want to watch Seattle or A’s games… Now I do, Is Mcphereson competing for the 3b job? if that guy ever figures out how to hit big league pitching he could be awesome….I hope Jake Fox gets his share of at bats he is a animal

TheReturnOfMrBlanks
5 years 7 months ago

If I was Seattle’s coach I would make sure every time we were about to face the Angels I would have Felix and Lee both pitching in every series against them and take the series that way….no way the Angels can fight those 2 guys off facing them both a million times..

bjsguess
5 years 7 months ago

Felix Hernandez has racked up 110 innings against the Angels. He has posted a 4.20 ERA. In fact, only the Yankees have posed a bigger problem for Felix and that is in a very small sample size. To assume that the M’s win every matchup against the Angels simply by pitching Hernandez and Lee is awfully silly.

TheReturnOfMrBlanks
5 years 7 months ago

Then lets get silly my friend! I bet Felix dominates them this year

Donkeyball
5 years 7 months ago

Blanks, that is ridiculous. Why screw up your rotation against everyone else?

Seattle can stack the deck against The Angels in spring training like in ’08. 😉

Get over it and focus on the 162 games. Man, you M’s fans are hungry. Starving, actually.

firealyellon
5 years 7 months ago

Texas 90 wins
Angels 88 wins
Mariners 87 wins
A’s 85 wins

Rudolf
5 years 7 months ago

Probably the second lowest probability outcome.

saxonius1
5 years 7 months ago

muhahaha….with that killer pitching staff, Texas wins 90 games? NOPE.

halored101
5 years 7 months ago

with what rotation? texas doesn’t get 90

5 years 7 months ago

85 wins for the A’s is about 10 too high. As a die hard A’s fan, I’m not too happy with this off season

RJC
5 years 7 months ago

No way Oakland wins 85-games, more like 75. They are too young on the hill and thin on offense. They need a hot start to finish near .500.

opusyoungblood
5 years 7 months ago

I don’t think many people are expecting them to tear through the AL West, but you have to realize that they will probably field a team with 6-7 above average defenders (Suzuki, Barton, Ellis, Sweeney, Crisp and Davis (Pennington is a wild card)), that they will probably have one of the best bullpens (Bailey, Ziegler, Devine, Wuertz, etc.) and will likely have an above average rotation.

universalguru
5 years 7 months ago

Wow the Angels have had a real tough off-season. I’m a bit surprised to see how well the A’s did though. I would have kept Wallace but Taylor’s got plenty of upside. That all said, go M’s!

coachofall
5 years 7 months ago

Texas is no better this year than last. Byrd to Vlad? no upgrade there at all. Also only other significant change is Harden for Millwood. I would take Millwood and his steady, solid production over Harden and his spectactular 5 inning outings and invariable trips to the DL. I don’t see them has upgrading at all. In fact if you look at some of their starters from last year their stats say they were “lucky” to win the number of games they won. Sea is better, ANA still need to find another starter, Oakland will continue to develop what they have as will Texas. Tex and Oakland are built for 2011

Damian0
5 years 7 months ago

– You mention some pitchers getting lucky.. when by far the luckiest was Kevin Millwod, who you hate them losing.

– Its not all luck, the Rangers had one of the biggest year to year defensive improvements in the game, and that should only get better with an improvement in CF and Young having experience at 3b (where his UZR was hugely negative the first 2 months, and fine from there).

– Some of those young pitchers having good years were top prospects and *gasp* its possible that the rangers developed a pitcher or two.

– Well then how about the reverse, players who had bad seasons. Hamilton, though still a question, is highly unlikely to give NOTHING again. Theres no way Chris Davis will be as bad as he was in the first half again. Kinsler will likely up his OBP.

– Why are you comparing the CF change to the DH change? Its byrd to borbon (top prospect, better defense and speed but less power, we’ll see) and andruw jones to vlad (upgrade).

– 140 innings of harden + 60 innings of the rangers plentiful 6th starter options is probably better than 200 ip of millwood. They need that 140 ip though, can’t 90% of the year like he did in Oak a couple times.

coachofall
5 years 7 months ago

Feldman will regress. Holland will improve. Feliz to the rotation is a HUGE question mark. I agree they are on the right track but are not better this year than last year and I stand by that. Davis is that bad! Smoak is in the wings which is also an upgarade over him. Don’t discout the loss of Vizquel working with Andrus. Hamilton’s health is far from a slam dunk. I was referring to offensive production. Borbon was there starting most of the last 2 months last year, he’s solid not Great. Vlad isnt the Vlad we all loved to watch. If they can get a combined 200 games out of Vlad and Hamilton I would be shocked.
Millwood was not an ace, but he was a steady innings eater which this staff seriously lacks. The ENTIRE staff will be on Inning counts. Their bull pen is not designed to handle this. They still have time to address this but havent done so yet

mtex
5 years 7 months ago

Why do you think that the entire pitching staff will be on inning counts? Ryan has consistently said that the SP will exit the game when their job is done – not with pitch counts, not with inning counts.

You are right when you say that Feliz is a question mark in the rotation. He’ll likely start in AAA before working out of the bullpen – b/c there are tons of pen options for the Rangers during the season. Additionally, the Rangers went out and signed possibly the most reliable bullpen arm available.

Damian0
5 years 7 months ago

– Why on earth is Davis that bad. This guy lead minor league baseball in homeruns and rbis from the start of 2006 until mid 2008 when he was called up while hitting over .300. He then his .285/.331/.549 as a 22 year old for half a season in the majors. And he hit .308/.338/.496 in the second half last year. And developing as a player going into his age 24 season, hes as bad as his putrid first 2009 half that nothing he did before or after that nothing hes done before or after would suggest? Ok there buddy.

– Lol, Vlad to Byrd a noticeable offensive downgrade? The “vlad we know” has a career .964 ops. Theres a long way to go between the old vlad and being a DOWNGRADE from career .764 ops only-hit-in-arlington Marlon Byrd. The only offensive year in which vlad hasn’t completely obliterated marlon byrd is indeed 2009, but that was with torn pectoral muscle hurting him instead of just his general health with which he was still productive with in 2008 and after recovering from the pectoral in late 2009. Even with all the injuries his slash line is about as good as Byrds without the benefit of Arlington.

– Vlad and Hamilton played 189 games in the worst case scenario 2009, and 299 games in 2008. And you’d be SHOCKED if they get to 200? Lol.

– How steady was he? He had an era over 5 while pitching an average of 170 innings in 2007 and 2008. Yes, the SP’s inning counts will be a major concern for the rangers. It was in 2009 too. Thats a team weakness. As for the bullpen- no bullpen can completely pick up the slack for a rotation that doesn’t go deep into the games, but their bullpen is certainly a good one and reasonably well suited to make the effort. Half the competitors for spots in the pen are starting prospects who can go multiple innings, they signed Darren Oliver who can bridge a 2 inning gap late in the game regularly, the only people who are 1 inning guys are the closer which doesn’t matter, and probably Chris Ray.

You are being as pessimistic as possible. Everyone who underperformed last year will be as bad or worse, and everyone who overpeformed will tank. It doesn’t work like that. Now, not everyone will hit their peaks either- but the sum as it stands should be a gain.

RJC
5 years 7 months ago

On paper, the subtractions definitely out-weight the additions, but I would argue that the list looks much worse than it actually is. Here’s why.

One look at John Lackey’s peripherals and the first thing that comes to mind is the word “peaked”. Throw in his injuries and immature antics and you got a player already in decline. I think Weaver steps into his rotation slot and Kazmir, Hokey Joe and Santana head up the best 1-4 in the AL west.

As much as Vlad contributed to the recent success of the team, the man is a shell of his former self. He can’t play the field or be relied upon to stay healthy for more than 100 games. Plus, outfield is crowded with aging players as is and his number should be easily upgraded with Matsui replaces his AB’s

Chone Figgins- An anomaly in that he seems to have figured it out so relatively late in his career, it will interesting to see running around the bases in spacious Safeco. You hate to lose his OBP, but with perennial prospect Brandon Wood ready to go, you have to give him a shot. Hopefully we get 20-25 hrs and 85+ RBI’s out of him.

5 years 7 months ago

Are you really sure being the Angels as the best 1-4 ? I don’t really think so…
FIP 09
Weaver 4.04
Kazmir 4.26
Saunders 5.17
Santana 5.02

Felix 3.09
Lee 3.11
RRS 4.20
Snell 4.88

It’s a laugh when you speak of Vlad as a guy who can’t play more than 100 games and his production being easily replaceable when Matsui can’t even run for a double without getting injured.

On Chone Figgins, don’t worry his production is going to be fine along with his great defense. As far as Wood goes, he is a prospect, you never know for sure how is he going to translate his minor league numbers in the bigs.

RJC
5 years 7 months ago

Ok, Vlad may play over hundred games, and we all know he mashes in the Texas heat, but if think Hideki’s legs are worse for wear, you haven’t seen Vlad limp around the bases. My assertion is that we aren’t losing a lot in the Masui for Vlad swap.

And yes, I’d still take the Halo’s 1-4 over the M’s. Santana seemed to get over his injuries in the second have and Kazmir was lights our in 2nd half of last year.

Rudolf
5 years 7 months ago

But you wouldn’t take your top three over ours… and you haven’t seen the #3 Jack is going to pick up.

RJC
5 years 7 months ago

Actually, yes I would take my top 3 over yours. I think there’s a huge drop off, like Mariana Trench drop off, after Lee a Felix the Cat. I think he, Felix, had one very good year and that it’s not a guarantee that he bounces back for another. As another poster here pointed out, he’s always struggled against the Angels.

elturtle
5 years 7 months ago

Kazmir is definitely under 4.0, but not sure how far under. His ERA with the Angels is under 2.0, but not saying he will repeat that for a whole year. Saunders will probably be around 4.0, definitely not higher than 4.5 I think. Santana is the big question mark. He seems to pitch well every other year for some unknown reason, so I think this may be a good year for him :). Would anyone argue against the point that all four of those guys could win at least 15 games each? Whether they do or not, remains to be seen. It is going to be a great year competition wise for the AL West. I’m looking forward to watching a lot of meaningful games this season. Go Angels!

MadmanTX
5 years 7 months ago

The Mariners and Rangers definitely gained some ground on the Angels. FYI The Angels may have dominated the division the last 3 years, but the As have won more division titles overall 14-8.

mochajoe
5 years 7 months ago

Seattle is vastly improved on paper!

ryankrol
5 years 7 months ago

In 1991, the Angels stacked themselves with a power-laden lineup (Dave Winfield, Dave Parker, Gary Gaetti, Lance Parrish), and got a stellar performance from their top three starting pitchers (Mark Langston 19-8, Chuck Finley 18-9, Jim Abbott 18-11) yet they still were only 81-81 for that season. Why? Because just about everyone in the middle of that order (minus Wally Joyner and Winfield) went over the hill and there was little power in the second half. The reason I am pointing this out is because so many people are in love with the moves the Mariners have made, even though the M’s still have no real power threat, and they only have two proven arms in their rotation. Do a position-by-position comparison of the 2010 Mariners and the 1991 Angels, and then see if you still have the M’s winning the AL West. Someone mentioned Kenji Johjima. Well someone in that front office doesn’t have their eye completely on the ball because you can’t win anything without a solid catcher. I commend the M’s emphasis on defense, but I’m thinking that the Rangers are the team to watch out for. Especially if they can re-sign Hank Blalock after signing Vladdy. Two more solid starting pitchers, and Texas is likely your Division winner. That’s if the pieces that Angels were missing for much of last season don’t stay healthy. Remember, they scored all those runs last summer with Hunter and Vladdy on the DL, and fought their way to first place with a beat up, last place starting rotation. Whatever might happen, I’m excited to see a 3-team race in the AL West again.

Rudolf
5 years 7 months ago

Apply the 1991 Angels theory to the 2010 Angels, who have their share of aging sluggers. I doubt that Angels team played the league’s best defense with a first rate bullpen, either. Nothing about the 2010 M’s suggests a tired second half team that can’t hit the ball.

And Hank blalock sucks. and the Rangers aren’t going after more starting pitching. What was this post about again?

Damian0
5 years 7 months ago

Jon Daniels said today that the rangers next target is a starting pitcher.

However, it will have to be someone cheap and not anything thats going to change opinions on here. Doug Davis type.