Angels Reach New Low, Have Worst Record in AL

Joe Maddon’s Los Angeles Angels club went into their doubleheader on Tuesday with an AL-worst record of 9-20. Less than one week from the upcoming Aug. 31 trade deadline, the Angels look more like sellers than buyers if the losing trend continues.  

While many trade rumors have swirled around Angels super-utility, lead-off hitter David Fletcher, it would seem more likely that contending clubs could be interested in some of the pitching on the Angels. Dylan Bundy and Andrew Heaney are both free agents following the 2021 season and would provide contending clubs more than a one-month rental. The Angels need young starting pitching that can help the club as soon as 2021. The Angels have a good young core of potential starters in Griffin Canning, Patrick Sandoval, Reid Detmers, Chris Rodriguez, Aaron Hernandez, and Jose Suarez but could benefit by getting more depth in return. 

Dylan Bundy and Andrew Heaney both appear to be two of the more attractive free agents at the starting pitcher position under 31 years old following the 2021 season. Both would seem unlikely to re-sign with Angels before getting the opportunity to test the free agent market. The Angels are looking to contend next season and would likely want pitchers that were at Double-A level last season and close to helping MLB club as soon as next season.  

Bundy’s 44 strikeouts are equal to that of Gerrit Cole and Max Scherzer this season and he is currently one of less than 15 pitchers with a Fangraphs WAR of 1.1 or greater. Heaney has struggled in several outings this year but has plus fastball and could potentially benefit from a change in scenery at this point in this career. He provides true upside to contending clubs looking for depth to carry into 2021 season at starting pitching. 

Pitching is something all contenders are in the hunt for at the trade deadline and the Angels are also deep with controllable options for contending clubs in search of relievers. Noe Ramirez, Felix Pena, Mike Mayers, Hoby Milner, and Keynan Middleton are all controllable for prospective clubs through the 2023 season.  

Angels This Week 

Last week was a week to forget for the Angels, who lost three of four to San Francisco and two of three to Oakland. The Angels found themselves at the bottom of the American League West on Wednesday morning, trailing Oakland by 11.5 games.

Albert Pujols’s fifth-inning single on Monday to drive in Mike Trout was the 2,087th career RBI of his career, moving him into second place all-time. Pujols now trails only Hall of Fame legend Henry Aaron’s 2,297 runs batted in for the most ever since the statistic has been verified.  

Mike Trout found his name in the news in a different way this past weekend as his 2009 Bowman rookie card was sold at an auction for a record-setting $3.93 million. This baseball card sale breaks the previous record purchase price of $3.12 million paid in 2016 for the famous T206 Honus Wagner card produced between 1909-1911. 

Catcher Anthony Bemboom pitched a scoreless ninth inning Monday for the Angels in their 11-4 loss to the Astros in Houston. Bemboom is only the second position player to pitch for the Angels since 1993 following fellow Angels catcher Francisco Arcia’s 2018 outing. 

The Angels’ worst record in the AL going into play Tuesday also means that they currently sit in the No. 2 spot for the 2021 MLB Draft. Prized Vanderbilt starting pitcher, Kumar Rocker, is looked to be the consensus No. 1 selection at this point and something fans of the bottom-feeders in 2020 will be paying close attention to as the 2020 seasons winds down. 

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