Sunday, November 24, 2013

By Greg Bearringer, Columnist -

1) David Freese might as well wear a sign that says "average third baseman" around his neck, because I think that's probably what the Angels are expecting out of him next season. He is probably better that (since he has pretty good plate discipline), but a back injury might just eat into his playing time over the next two seasons. Barring that,  "average"  marks a huge upgrade for the Angels at the hot corner, and makes a fine bridge to Kaleb Cowart.

2) That being said (and I am going to parrot Keith Law ($) here somewhat), I'd probably rather have three seasons of Peter Bourjos than two of Freese, but its not a huge difference-- and, considering the Angels roster, its a move that makes perfect sense. In a vacuum, you'd prefer  the cheaper defensive ace with an extra year of control, but this ain't a vacuum and the Angels don't exactly have Brooks Robinson available to take over third. The noise 'round here hates the deal because it's an organization giving up Bourjos, and there is a decent chance that he is a better player over the next three years-- but its no guarantee.  Over the past three years, he's had one really good season and two wrecked by injuries and middling results. If he's 2011 Bourjos this is a great move for the Cards-- but remember that season's stats were inflated with a higher than average BABIP-- which might be sustainable, but might not be.. Its half a step back, a full step forward move for the Halo's, especially considering how bad their third base options really are.

3) If we think of this as two separate trades,  the Angels loose a value in the Freese-Bourjos deal but break even in the Fernando Salas -Randal Grichuk deal. It is my opinion that the Angels needed two relievers this offseason, but only one 8th/9th inning guy. Salas might be that, but probably isn't. I like hime better than most people seem to, but remember this: building a good bullpen is essentially a numbers game, and he's got a chance to be a pretty good 5th guy out of the pen. Grichuk is nothing more than lottery ticket with the upside of Mark Trumbo and the downside of Adam Dunn minus all the walks (albeit with an actual, according-to-Hoyle defensive position). While I wouldn't put it past the Cardinals to develop Grichuk into a regular, the odds are long at best.

4) This deal will look better in about two weeks. Why, you ask? Simple: this move is essentially telegraphing the long-expected pitchin' trade by the Angels. What this move says to me is that the Angels aren't afraid to add a little salary or trade an asset since they like their other trade options. The addition of Freese does allow for an offensive downgrade at another position.  My guess is that Jerry Dipoto has a few Howie Kendrick/ Mark Trumbo conversations going on, and he's confident in his ability to convert at least one of the pair into some young pitching.

In summary, this deal will probably look much better when the offseason is complete, but as it stands it's a small positive move for the Angels in 2014 and '15. If Bourjos goes ham and becomes the guy so many here believe he can be,  if Grichuk becomes a solid player down the line,  or if Freese's back injury weighs him down too much, the Angels will be kicking themselves.  However, it will probably be a small step back for the Angels in terms of total value-- but, since they are filling a cavernous void at third base from a position of depth, it will probably end up as a net positive. 

Love to hear what you think!

Listen to "A Fish Like This" Tribute song to Mike Trout's Greatness

AngelsWin Media

We Recommend

 photo 8fbce79f-4964-43ef-a13d-ff1832b5e9a4_zpsd3c2ece7.jpg
Click on the picture above to pick up a copy of Rob Goldman's latest on Angels' great, Nolan Ryan. A Must Read for every fan of the Angels! Website Store

 photo t_zps6af139fc.gif
Copyright © 2013 Los Angeles Angels Blog | is the unofficial website of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Our comments and views do not express the views of the major league club or anyone affiliate with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. blog content, articles and opinions are provided "as is" and without warranties of any kind.  We disclaim warranties, express or implied, including warranties for a particular purpose, accuracy, completeness, availability, security, compatibility and non-infringement.  Blog material, articles and other information furnished or supplied by you to become the ownership of for use at our discretion.  Your use of AngelsWin content is at your own discretion and risk. We do not warrant that any content here be error free that access thereto will be uninterrupted or errors will be corrected. We do not warrant or make any representations regarding  the use of any content made available through  You hereby waive any claim against us with respect thereto. may contain the opinions and views of other members and users. We cannot endorse, guarantee, or be responsible for the accuracy, efficacy or veracity of any content generated by our members and other users. The content of is intended for educational and entertainment purposes only. Such content is not intended to, and does not, constitute legal, professional, medical or healthcare advice or diagnosis, and may not be used for such purposes. Reliance on any information appearing on is strictly at your own risk. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. You should not act or refrain from acting on the basis of any content included in, or accessible through, the without seeking the appropriate legal or other professional advice on the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer or professional licensed in the recipient's state, country or other appropriate licensing jurisdiction.