Mariners righty Taijuan Walker is headed for a medical consultation to determine whether he ought to undergo surgery on his troublesome right foot, as MLB.com’s Greg Johns reports. The 24-year-old has suffered with arch tendinitis, and may go in for a procedure to help address the problem over the offseason. Rest is the alternative, but a decision must be made soon. Walker says that the specialist he spoke with previously told him “it would be anywhere from a three- to four-month recovery to be ready to pitch.” Walker had a roller-coaster campaign — manager Scott Servais says he was “all over the board” with hot and cold stretches — but ultimately ended with a 4.22 ERA over 134 1/3 innings, with 8.0 K/9 against 2.5 BB/9. Seattle will hope that Walker can put the foot issue behind him and fully realize his talent in 2017.
Here’s more from out west:
- Among the Athletics’ many needs, the outfield stands at the top of the list, Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle writes. Outside of Khris Davis, there’s little in the way of sure things. “No question center fielder is a concern short term and long term,” said president of baseball operations Billy Beane. “Until we discover a long-term option, we may be strategic in how we fill that temporarily.” Slusser notes that the club could end up pursuing a bounceback player, suggesting Carlos Gomez as one possible solution.
- The Angels also ended 2016 buried in the AL West, but the team is still exuding optimism about the season to come, as Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register writes. “I don’t think we’re that far off,” says manager Mike Scioscia. “I know that we’re all going to work very hard this winter not only to put together a team but get it ready and play well in the spring and have some different conversations this time next year.”
- One key for the Angels, of course, is righty Garrett Richards. Per Fletcher, he is up to 97 mph as he continues to try to battle through UCL issues rather than succumbing to Tommy John surgery. He is slated for two more instructional league appearances before undergoing a final medical exam. If all goes well, the club will pencil him in for next season. “If you talk about having a top-of-the-rotation starter vs. not having a top-of-the-rotation starter, that would be a sizable difference for any club,” Eppler said.
- Regardless, the Angels figure to chase pitching, per Eppler (also via Fletcher). And the Halos have several holes to fill on the position-player side. Still, the GM says he won’t head into the winter just looking to tick through the team’s needs. “I don’t really walk in with a grocery list and say ’This is what we need,’ because then you end up forcing a shot,” says Eppler. “To use a basketball reference, I don’t want to force the shot. If the shot is there and the circumstances are right, take it.”
Good Lord help this lost Angels organization…. They need all the help they can get.
RyÅn W Krol
Explain the sloppiness of the teams making the playoffs. Meaning how many of them are ranked all over the place. Especially the Rangers and their run differential that is only 8, which should only good for an 82-80 record. If the Angels are so lost then why is their team ERA outranking the division winner? It’s called baseball.
What sloppiness are we talking about here. They are all ranked at the top of their leagues in terms of Wins. The top 5 teams from each league are in. That’s how the playoffs work. They aren’t ranked all over the place. They are literally ranked 1-5 and 1-5. Sigh….
Why don’t you just look at the scores of the past 162 games instead of trying to use stats to come up with a different record for each team? Newsflash: the Angels didn’t win the division.
This Ryan Krol guy just trolls Angel fans. Dude is clueless…. and he comes off that way in his writing. The only thing sloppy is his written thoughts of garbage. Ryan, if your that insecure with yourself that you have to troll and hide behind your thoughts as you continue to try and be little people… I’d be happy to teach you self confidence in my MMA class. 1st month free for you bud. I love helping people such as yourself become a better, stronger, and more secure person with ones self and life. It’s gratifying to me.
RK’s been around here a long time and he’s always respectful and not condescending.
It’s fine to disagree, but be a little more respectful.
Dookie Howser, MD
Better not talk to HaloShane that way, He teaches MMA
RyÅn W Krol
Calling the Angels the worst organization in baseball is a clueless comment, and yet you’re attempting to call someone else a troll. All you ever say is the Angels are the worst organization in baseball. Quite a negative and vastly over exaggerated observation. Over and over and over. And yet you’re going to preach about insecurity, self confidence, and being a stronger, better person? I used to moderate these threads. I learned a lot from those who run this site about commenters like you. Your behavior is classic trolling.
20+ games out and the manager thinks they aren’t far off. LOL and that right there is why this franchise is a joke. Teams like the Tigers, Cardinals, Pirates, teams that missed the playoffs by a handful of games, those teams aren’t far off. The Angels need to make up about 20 wins which means they are about 10-12 good players away from being in the playoff hunt and with their sky-high payroll and joke of a farm system where are these players going to come from? The DFA wire that Eppler kept pulling names out of the whole year lol. This team is pretty damn far off. About as far as you can be.
Not that I disagree with you but look at the ’87 Twins who went from worst to first, and othe and teams who did the same. Maybe he believes they can do that.
Would I agree with him? No, absolutely not. I think their farm system is depleted and their major league roster is sub par.
Angels need to rebuild their farm team before thinking of contending. They have a few players with trade value not named Trout that could replenish the system. Unfortunately for their fans the owner is in a win or else mode. The question is do they want to be a contender or just another mediocre team that misses the playoffs? Plugging a few holes will not make them contend without a lot of luck.
Or differential was positive which should make us a slightly better than .500 team, that coupled with swapping our deeply below replacement value staff with the boys we came to camp with should push us even higher. Historically teams get better fast, Eppler has a ton of work this offseason, but they arent wrong.
You guys reveal your foolishness with lazy comments like this. After a few years of mistakes this organization is heading in the right direction.
Aging big money free agents are in the rear view and the major league roster is a very good unit when healthy. It’s easy to forget but this unit is only 2yrs removed from the leagues best record and 1yr from playoff contention. It’s mostly the same core with some improvements (Simmons>Aybar Cron>old Cron) peppered in. Health will decide whether or not we contend next yr.
Farm is being re-built through the draft/Rule 5/minor league signings but that cannot happen over night. We can also spend on the international market again which can only help said farm system. The guys Eppler has snagged off of the DFA pile are clever low-risk gambles and a few are already paying slight dividends. Just reading that comment about “forcing a shot” makes me optimistic about the future. Way to go Epp, you’re doing it right. You have support from some of the Halo faithful
Some Angels fans here are making a fetish out of rebuilding the farm system. As in, “blow up the major league roster” to rebuild the system. That’s insane. A strong farm system is not an end goal, it is a means to a bigger goal, that being a contending major league roster.
Rebuilding the farm system will be best done slow and steady. Bringing in a new scouting director is a huge step in that direction, but we won’t see how Matt Swanson’s drafting looks until at least 1 year from now, after the June 2017 draft picks have spent a half season in the minors.
You can bash Moreno and Scioscia if you want, but almost everyone else on the player development side has been in place for less than a full year. No reason to bash them yet.
It’s insane, right. The Cubs, Red Sox, Astros, Giants, Cardinals, Dodgers, Mets and Indians all rebuilt their farm systems and they’re all regretting that decision right now. Wait. Those are the teams in the playoffs!
The Angels continuously had one of the top farm systems in baseball during the 2000’s and we’re an annual playoff team. Since 2010 they’ve consistently had one of the worst (the worst) farms and they’ve made the playoffs once. Hmm. Hmmmm. Hmmmmmmmmmmm.
It’s not a fetish.. It’s a, we hate losing and don’t want to continue losing.
Please tell us which Mike Trout level player each of those teams traded to rebuild those farm systems.
Also tell me which of those teams fired a first year GM because he didn’t rebuild within a single calendar year.
Or could it be most of those teams rebuilt through the draft over several years?
RyÅn W Krol
Having Shields and K-Rod at the back end of their bullpen was a big reason they won all those division titles. I can remember so many times during that era, FOX Sports West would show the graphic that the Angels were (ballpark figure) 65-1 when leading after 8 innings. That’s why the Yankees were in the postseason year after year. Mo never blew a save. That’s usually what separates a playoff team from the rest of the pack. And now you look at the teams in the playoffs right now, and you’ll see some strong performances from their bullpens. And many of those teams had a lot of their own starting pitching problems and injuries. One could argue that losing Joe Smith and Huston Street was the top reason the Angels lost 88 games. Their offense was good enough, their starting pitching actually held their own for how depleted it was, but the bullpen constantly blew leads late. That was until Eppler finally came up with a productive combination of Deolis Guerra, JC Ramirez, and Andrew Bailey. Then suddenly after losing 11 in a row, the Angels finished 25-18.
Whether or not any contender has rebuilt their farm system, this season really came down to bullpens.
And not all of those teams you listed rebuilt their farm system, nor are they all in the playoffs.
In fact a couple of those teams have a lot of older players…
2016 was about bullpens.
RyÅn W Krol
The Royals retaining Moore was an unpopular decision by most of the fan base when it occurred. And then…
Also, when fans try to talk about rebuilding the Angels, they point out the Cubs among other teams.
Like you pointed out, and I’m going to add to it, the Cubs were able to stay patient, and were also lucky enough to have so many prospects pan out at the same time. And they were able to do all of this because…
… They don’t have a Mike Trout that forced them to go for it every year.
That’s where the Angels are. In some ways, Mike Trout is just as much of a curse as he is an asset. Maybe a bit harsh. But he forces the Angels to go out and try to build a contender every offseason.
And it would be the same for whoever would acquire him if that ever did really happen.
Dookie Howser, MD
“Aging big money free agents are in the rear view”
Hi, I’m here for my 30 million dollars.
– Albert Pujols circa 2021
RyÅn W Krol
There’s about $150-160 million in AAV on the Angels payroll after Albert’s contract…
The A’s should consider moving pieces to obtain Mccutchen. Other than that, maybe moving Vogt for some relief help and adding another starter in the OF, they may well be on their way to contending again.
No, they should stand pat and see what they’ve got with all these interesting young players they’ve been picking up the last couple years. Let’s see how Cotton, Montas, Barreto, Mengden, Manaea, Chapman, Healy, Maxwell and Olson all do next year while some of their arms like Jeffries, Puk, Shore, and Holmes continue developing in the upper minors. You guys aren’t that far off and you’ve got a really nice collection of young players to be excited about.
Imo it’s slightly too early to start thinking about trading for those veterans to solidify your team. See who and what your core is first then go from there. Sort of like what the Cubs and Astros have done the last two years. A’s are going to be scary good in two years.
If anything I think they should look to move Vogt and maybe Semien to add some more young arms. Maxwell and Phegley can handle the dish and you’ve got Barreto coming up to play SS probably by the middle of next year. Definitely keep Sonny though. You’re going to need a veteran ace to mentor all those young arms and I think he’ll rebound next year and return to form.
Just Another Fan
Strongly agreed, if anything the A’s need to take a step back and seriously look at how many players they are forcing to play out of position right now. It’s so discouraging to have to hear Melvin say Healy is the 3B incumbent when he’s remarkably bad defensively there, but he just looks like an excellent 1B. Davis is a shockingly bad defender too and needs to be DH full time. Semien was better than last year, but he is seriously not a good defensive SS by the eye test, and Barreto is on another planet to him right now. Semien however, has a very loud bat so the A’s need to focus on getting him to unlock his potentially elite power over that, and move him to either 2B or LF – just really have him focus on hitting.
Here’s what the A’s -should- (but probably wont because they enjoy losing) look like on Opening Day:
3B Chapman (best defensive 3B in org and since Chavez/Donaldson)
OF: ?-?-? (Vogt was a LF before coming to Oakland and gets absolutely brutalized behind the plate, I’ve never seen a catcher fail to catch the ball and take it off his body more than I have Vogt – that’s not a good C – his bat is decent too though, and he should go to a place where he’s not taking 95 mph balls directly off his body – put him in LF if you dont trade him)
Sadly for your analysis, they truly are stuck with the FA/trade market for OF options and we all know how Beane fares on the FA market (horrifically). It appears at minimum, a trade for a true CF is likely. But who? My short list would be: Kevin Pillar, Billy Hamilton, Lorenzo Cain, Jarrod Dyson, Keirmaier, Inciarte, Jankowski. Value defense in CF over everything.
I think you (at least temporarily) answered your own question with the OF. Move Vogt to left and pull a Ian Desmond with Semien and stick him in CF or at least try him in RF. That would give you Chapman, Barretto, Schrock (love his bat), and Healy as your future IF and you can roll with Vogt, Semien, and Olson in OF for now. When that big trio of arms you got hit the big leagues then you can see where the upgrades need to be made. But you’re right about Semien’s bat and it needs to be in the lineup so why not see if his 30+ HR’s translate well enough to offset his glove in the OF.
Barreto can use at least some time in AAA, he’s going to be 21 next season and it would be great to see him develop more. He’s a little behind where Addison Russell was at a similar age.
I agree that CF is a huge need and would like to see them make a play for Cain or Keirmaier, both of whom should be available. I’d also be looking for a stopgap at SS so they can get Semien over to 2B or in the OF to start the season. And I know there will be a lot of sentiment to bring back Reddick….if it can be done at what the A’s were originally offering, that also a reasonable move to fill an OF spot.
Just Another Fan
Barreto needs about 5 minutes at AAA, same with Chapman. Their defense is MLB ready, and that’s all that should matter to Oakland – getting the best D behind the pitchers as possible, hitting doesn’t have to be there but honestly, Barreto & Chapman right now are probably going to do more at the plate than Wendle, Pinder, or Muncy – all three of those guys are AAAA.
Reddick is injury prone and has declined in all facets of the game. Unless he will take a max deal of 3/30, with the fact he will be platooned, I don’t like the fit for Oakland. There’s plenty of cheaper diamonds in the rough out there Beane can find – still his strong point.
Olson passed the eye test in the extremely small sample in RF – he’s a great athlete, no idea how the bat will play though, he’s a big question – same with Arismendy Alcantara and Renato Nunez. Now, those 3 are guys who could use another full year at AAA, they are the ones who stalled out but are still very young and are only an adjustment or two away.
I don’t want to see any of the young prospects trading unless its Nunez only because he doesn’t seem to have a future position. The A’s need to stay the course and let the team gel. Just bring in a defensive CF as a stop gap until the team is ready to contend in 2018. Baretto is not ready for the bigs. Give him until September call up next year. Chapman might be up earlier but give them a chance to progress. Just be patient and they will contend in the future.
Just Another Fan
Barreto is more ready for the bigs than he isnt. Numbers are there, eye tests are there, defensively he’s better than Semien or Pinder. No reason to not play young players on a rebuilding team. The A’s can absolutely afford to have players take lumps, its what they have been doing so far.
Well, aside from starting clocks early on a franchise that is notorious for moving players sometimes before they have to,. I’d at least like to see Barreto called up after there’s no chance he hits super-2 status, assuming such a thing still exists in the new CBA. And I’m with you on Reddick now that I looked at his numbers more closely. I didn’t realized he’d regressed so much against LHP. That’s what I get for moving from Oakland to Canada and not watching as many A’s games this year.
Alcantara needs to understand that he’s even close to a power hitter and needs to take advantage of his true tool in speed or else he is doomed.
Yeah but even a hit to their farm system, won’t be too much. The A’s are relatively stacked with middle infielders in their farm system, and if they can somehow manage to get Mccutchen for say perhaps Holmes/ Montas and maybe Chapman than I would do the trade. Otherwise their going to be left scrapping the barrel for plug ins and that’s not going to fix anything. Maybe just plugging in Vogt at 1st in a platoon with Canha would be a better option than just trading him.
C- Maxwell, Phegley
1B- Vogt, Canha, Olson
2B- Wendle, Barreto?
SS – Semien
3B – Healy
LF – Mccutchen
CF – Jon Jay ?Pillar?
RF – Olson
Maybe add another starter in the rotation and their set.
Just Another Fan
I wouldn’t trade Chapman for McCutchen, I’d do Montas for him, but I’m assuming PITT would want more.
I also hope they trade for Yasiel Puig, but it appears a good postseason would make the Dodgers love him again.
Would not do those three for Cutch. I’m sorry but the guy is not worth that kind of package. Your talking about giving up a future TOR arm, a future closer, and arguably the best 3B prospect in the game. Cutch isn’t even 30 yet and his production has already fallen off a cliff. Maybe last year was a fluke but even if he does turn it around he’s only under contract for 2 more years and the A’s won’t be able to resign him nor should they because he’ll be 32 years old and we’ve seen what happens to 32 yr old All-Stars that sign huge contracts. Sometimes they work out fine (Cano, Votto) and sometimes they don’t (Pujols, Hamilton, CJWilson).
Not all three, and like what was mentioned above Chapman may be too much. Even if they do offload prospects for him, which they probably can.. they’ll be picking pretty high in the draft this year to make up for that loss. If Cutch fails to improve the team, I’m sure the A’s will offload him for more prospects. They only have a certain amount of time to make moves and if everything aligns right, this will be an awesome way of bouncing back.
The Angels downfall is their meddling owner Arte Moreno, who lives by the mantra of signing away ex-Rangers and guys like Pujols past their prime.
RyÅn W Krol
No, their downfall is having Mike Trout on their roster, which forces them to try and build a contender every offseason. And if the Cubs acquired him, they’d have to do the same thing. The grass is not always greener…
Angels have some payroll flexibility and a couple of players to dangle over the winter. Health to Bedrosian, Richards, Skaggs and Street is essential to the club competing next season. I would aggressively pursue Kolten Wong via trade and allow him to lead off. Find a left fielder (Carlos Gomez) on a short deal. I don’t believe they have the assets to deal for Charlie Blackmon, but he’d be a perfect fit. I don’t think they are that far off. They contended until the final day in 2015. This year was ruined by injuries.
I like the Wong fit, and advocated for it when he was demotws eariker this yr, but don’t see it as likely now. Hes played better of late and the contract is still affordable.
IMO They need to go after a depth type starter (see LA Dodgers) and fill LF. Eric Thames is a name that interests the hell out of me for LF. 2B may be filled internally with guys like Fletcher Johnson
Angels have no assets to trade. You could flip Calhoun or Cron for an arm but that’s addition by subtraction and you aren’t improving the major league roster that way. Wong would be nice but who are you going to offer to STL where they won’t hang up the phone laughing.
I know Cards want to rid themselves of Mat Adams, perhaps there’s a way to package Cron and something in the lower levels to take on Wong and Adams. Cards have some fit problems on their infield and might not necessarily be looking for replacements on the MLB or high minors – they might just want to shed salary. Adding a LH bat in Adams might not be the worse fit – I like Cron, but the Cards currently are using Carpenter some at 1B – I’m certain they’d prefer a RH option there. They have Gyrko under contract till 2021…he needs to play at 2B.
Cron and a couple lower level Angels “Prospects” for Wong and Adams!? Hahaha. The Angels don’t even have those. The Angels could offer their entire A-ball team and the Cards would say no.
RyÅn W Krol
The problem with that logic is that Cardinals were in a similar position right before Albert left. The only prospect of their’s that was heralded by scouts was Michael Wacha. Guys like Matt Carpenter weren’t given much of a chance but he and several other Cardinals prospects stepped up and found success at the Major League level. Call it a swarm of Kole Calhouns emerging for them. The Cardinals were very lucky that so many prospects found success after Albert left. So they know full well that prospects that aren’t given much hype can suddenly emerge as successful Major Leaguers to the surprise of everyone. One example is Randall Grichuk. Who was he? The Cardinals took him even though he had no business being valued as much as he was in the David Freese trade. And now he’s a key part of their core. Just goes to show how top prospect ratings are just media hype, and that any prospect can step it up and become a fixture for any team at the Major League level. I recommend an article that FanGraphs wrote on Kole Calhoun and why he was never a prospect.
RyÅn W Krol
The Angels will be very active this offseason. The free agent market is weak in terms of making a big splash. But there are a LOT of affordable and productive options. The Angels already have their core in place. So all they really need to do is plug holes with these cheap options. Here’s a look at what the Angels roster can look like:
LF Michael Saunders
3B Yunel Escobar
CF Mike Trout
DH Albert Pujols
RF Kole Calhoun
1B CJ Cron
SS Andrelton Simmons
C Jett Bandy
2B Neil Walker? Aaron Hill? Internal options?
C Carlos Perez
UT Cliff Pennington
UT Jefry Marte (this guy could be a hidden gem, reminds me of Juan Rivera)
UT Gregorio Petit
OF Rafael Ortega
Doug Fister? Jeremy Hellickson? Gio?
Depth: Alex Meyer, Nate Smith
Kenley Jansen? Aroldis Chapman? Why not?
There a lot of options in the relief market.
This is just an idea. BUt with the money coming off the books, the Angels can really get creative this offseason. They can bounce back while rebuilding their farm system at the same time. That’s the luxury of being a high market franchise.