After opting out of their stadium lease last October, the Angels agreed to a one-year lease extension with the city of Anaheim back in January. However, Bill Shaikin of the L.A. Times reports that the extension doesn’t mean the team’s lease now expires after the 2020 season. Rather, the January agreement was merely an extension of the opt-out agreement — effectively delaying the team’s final say on whether it’ll opt out at all or remain in its current lease with Angel Stadium, which runs through 2020. The Angels have explored the possibility of building new stadium in Long Beach and in Anaheim, but a third option would simply be to remain in their current park through the end of their current lease in 2029. Angels ownership will have until Dec. 31 to ultimately make that call; Shaikin suggests that any agreement on a Long Beach development would require the renegotiation of a short-term lease in the current facility while the new structure is built.
More news and notes out of the AL West…
- Prior to embarking on the team’s rebuild, Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto tasked upwards of 20 baseball operations and analytics staffers with identifying potential acquisitions, writes Corey Brock of The Athletic (subscription required). “The most oft-mentioned hypothetically-acquired player was J.P. [Crawford], who was identified by virtually all of those who took part in the project,” Dipoto tells Brock. The organization widely viewed Crawford as an affordable and potentially available shortstop of the future, and Dipoto now says the club is more confident than ever that Crawford can be just that type of piece. The 24-year-old already dropped jaws across the baseball world with one of the season’s most spectacular defensive plays late last month (video link), and the club believes the work he’s put in with infield coach Perry Hill has improved his footwork to the point that he can be a consistent plus with the glove. Crawford’s .241/.321/.398 (95 wRC+) batting line isn’t all that eye-catching, the Mariners are optimistic that his bat will improve as his glove has this season. Crawford spent enough time in the minors this season that he can be controlled through the 2025 season.
- Last night’s gem from Homer Bailey — seven shutout innings of two-hit ball with one walk and seven strikeouts — was well-timed but doesn’t secure the veteran’s place in the Athletics’ rotation, writes Ben Ross of NBC Sports Bay Area. Bailey has pitched well in all of his home starts and last night’s road outing in San Francisco, but he’s also been torched in visits to Minute Maid Park (Astros) and Wrigley Field (Cubs). Each of Mike Fiers, Brett Anderson, Tanner Roark and Chris Bassitt appears locked into a rotation spot now, and the A’s will soon welcome back Sean Manaea from the injured list. A healthy Manaea would be Oakland’s best starter, leaving Bailey’s status somewhat unclear. The A’s also added Matt Harvey on a minor league contract last night, giving them another potential alternative to Bailey (depending, of course, on his performance in Triple-A Las Vegas).