AL West Notes: Figgins, Angels, Willingham

No American League West team is truly out of contention. The Rangers lead the way with a 40-36 record, the Mariners and Angels are hovering around .500 and the A's are back within 5.5 games of the division lead after a recent six-game winning streak. Here's the latest on the AL West: 

  • The Mariners still owe Chone Figgins over $20MM between now and the end of the 2013 season, but the infielder is playing poorly, so Larry Stone of the Seattle Times runs through the team's options. Stone concludes that the Mariners probably have to cut down on Figgins’ playing time and hope he finally heats up so that they can get some value from him, either in a trade or on the field. 
  • Angels GM Tony Reagins told Kevin Baxter of the LA Times that international free agency is an increasingly important and challenging source of talent for MLB teams. This year's international signing period begins July 2nd (link via the Baltimore Sun).
  • One scout for a contending team told Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle that Josh Willingham's Achilles injury could scare teams considering the outfielder as a possible trade target. The A's put Willingham on the disabled list, but he could return in early July, in time to reestablish his trade value.

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