The December 9th, 2011 edition of daily news for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim including all kinds of reaction to the Angels HUGE signings of Albert Pujols and C.J. Wilson and much more...
The Story: The Angels bet the future on Albert Pujols.
The Monkey Says: The analysis in this one is a bit confusing. First he says he doesn't think that he thinks Pujols makes the team better enough to justify the cost, then he says that the supporting cast the Angels have to offer Pujols isn't good enough either. So, they are too good to pay for him but not good enough to have him? I don't get it, but maybe I am still clouded by Pujols euphoria.
The Monkey Says: Law correctly identifies that the Angels have some huge offensive holes to fill which is why adding Pujols was paramount for the team.
The Story: Is Albert Pujols really worth $250 million?
The Monkey Says: Well, it is actually up to $254 million now, but that is a drop in the bucket at this point. This is hardly a ringing endorsement of the deal, but it also doesn't outright kill it. I think everyone pretty much agrees that Pujols can earn or come close to earning his money the first few years of his contract, but there is no way he earns his money the last few years of the deal unless he finds some magical way of staying in prime physical shape like Barry Bonds. Not that I would endorse that.
The Story: Why the Angels' spending spree makes sense.
The Monkey Says: Nothing about a ten-year deal ever makes sense, but Rosenthal make the salient point about the impending TV contract. That is going to be thrown around a lot in the coming years, so the Halos better be sure they make good on it and they better make sure they do it soon.
The Monkey Says: I obviously agree with Wells and Moreno being winners, but dispute Trumbo and Morales being losers. Trumbo is going to land on his feet, either at a new position or on another team. There is a chance he might have to ride the pine more than he likes this season if he stays with the Angels, but it should only be for a year. As for Morales, it almost doesn't affect him at all since his health status is such a huge question mark anyway. In fact, I have a lot of doubts that the Angels would have made this deal if they had any firm notion that he would be a quality player again in 2012.
The Monkey Says: The fact that they were offering more money with no state income tax makes this somewhat hard to believe. Wilson certainly made no secret that playing in California was his preference, but for Pujols, the supposed reason he spurned the Marlins was a lack of a no-trade clause. Personally, I think Albert just wanted to make sure that if he left St. Louis, it was going to be for a team with a history of being a contender and a good owner. There are just too many question marks regarding the Marlins ownership right. I still would like to know how short St. Louis came with their offer.
The Monkey Says: Law seems to think Wilson is a risky bet because of his lack of starting experience, which is interesting because a lot of others have suggested that his lack of mileage as a starter makes him less risky.
The Monkey Says: Dipoto basically said that he is pretty much done and shot down the idea of shopping Mark Trumbo. He also made a point of mentioning that the Angels prefer to conduct their business quietly if they can, so he might be lying about all of that, though I do think there is a lot of logic behind holding onto Trumbo for at least the first half of the season. Dipoto also gave a lot of credit to Arte Moreno for making this happen, especially since it was a plan that only seemed to come together in the last few days.
The Monkey Says: You might not want to look, it ain't pretty. It is worth noting though that many of the comparable players were from a much older era where physical fitness regimens weren't nearly on par with what training staffs can offer players nowadays.
The Monkey Says: The heavy backloading is being done for the obvious reason of allowing the Angels to afford to pay out all this money this season without going over the luxury tax line. This could most definitely create financial flexibility issues for them down the line, especially if Pujols' contract is structured in a similar manner.
The Monkey Says: Like, zoiks, Scoob! Um, yeah, this is mildly frightening, especially the looming threat of Tommy John surgery.
The Monkey Says: I think they are pretty even and that is before the Rangers have even really made a move yet. I don't think they have to make a move now, but I would be shocked if they didn't do something to try and bring some stability to their rotation, like a Matt Garza trade or a Yu Darvish signing (which I think they have been secretly planning all along, which is why they barely pursued C.J. Wilson).
The Story: Did C.J. Wilson really sign for cheap?
The Monkey Says: Crowd sourcing doesn't mean a thing unless the crowd is all baseball executives. What I see is Wilson getting a cheaper deal than than the ones signed by guys like A.J. Burnett and John Lackey, two pitchers I would say are pretty close to his level or lower, at least at the time of their signing. Comparatively, this is hard to complain about. It isn't a massive bargain either though.
The Monkey Says: That's kind of funny, but it does remind me of how bad I feel for the Cardinal fans. They are great fans and in a perfect world, they should have seen Albert retire as a Cardinal.
The Monkey Says: I still say the best course is to hold onto him, but if the right trade comes along, they obviously should look to move him. I can't think of such a trade at this point, but if someone has a real third baseman (who isn't expensive) they want to swap for Trumbo, I am sure they would be willing to listen.
The Monkey Says: Oh, right, other stuff happened yesterday too. Losing Fish kind of sucks as he has nice potential, but the Angels should be mildly relieved that Trevor Reckling wasn't pilfered.