|Peter Bourjos and Kendry Morales are likely on the trading block after the Josh Hamilton signing. (US Presswire)|
Jack Moore: The Angels' signing of Josh Hamilton caught the baseball world off guard, and it probably caught some of their players off guard, too. They now have a glut of outfielders, with Mark Trumbo or Peter Bourjos (or perhaps DH Kendrys Morales) now likely headed for the trade market. The Angels still need starting pitching behind Jered Weaver and C.J. Wilson (unless they want Garrett Richards in their opening day rotation). Who eventually gets dealt from Anaheim, and who should be buying?
R.J. White: I think the Angels are most motivated to move Morales. He has just one year remaining before he reaches free agency, while Trumbo and Bourjos don't become free agents until after the 2016 season. The Indians would likely be interested, though I'm not sure they have the pitcher the Angels will likely want in a trade. If the Pirates think they can compete in the NL Central, they could target Morales as a first baseman, though they also lack MLB-ready pitchers and Morales may not be able to handle first base on a full-time basis.
If the Angels are willing to stick a more valuable trade commodity out on the market, especially Trumbo, they could potentially approach the Mariners about one of their top pitching prospects. If they want a more established pitcher, I'm sure the Cubs would make Matt Garza available for either of those guys, but the Angels would probably want to see a healthy Garza in spring training or April before trading a valuable commodity for him.
Chris Cwik: The Angels have a good problem on their hands here. Trumbo and Bourjos are both young and cost controlled, so they should draw interest from pretty much every team. Even a team like the Astros or the Cubs could make a play, thinking they might be competitive by 2016. I could see some teams parting with a really valuable pitcher for either player, though both come with some risk, in my mind. Bourjos' bat worries me, and I don't know that he'll ever turn into a league-average hitter. At the same time, hitting .230 with good defense is probably acceptable these days in center, so maybe it doesn't matter. With Trumbo, it has to do with his walk rate. If he gets more patient at the plate, he can probably emerge as one of the better players in the game. If he regresses, he could become the next Mike Jacobs. Those are both extreme options, and Trumbo likely ends up somewhere in the middle. Still, people look at the big power and see a star, but his lack of on-base numbers can hurt the team.
I do agree that Morales is probably the guy the team wants to trade, but he also brings back less of a return. His market would be also be somewhat limited, as a fair amount of teams are already set at first. He makes sense on a few teams as a DH, though. My guess is that the Angels are looking for the best return possible, so they'll really try and push one of their outfielders. If they are disappointed by the offers they get for those guys, they'll probably settle for a lesser return by dealing Morales.
Jack Moore: With the Mets probably out of the picture with R.A. Dickey looking like he's on his way to Toronto, my question now is who wants an outfielder and has surplus pitching to deal for him? I think Trumbo would have been a perfect fit for the Mets, and maybe they could still deal a guy like Jon Niese, but that seems unlikely at this point.
Perhaps the Rays make a play for Morales? They need a designated hitter and have a bevy of young pitching prospects that could take over were they to deal, say, a cost-controlled type like Jeff Niemann. I'm not sure that would be enough for the Angels, but there just seems to be a shortage of pitching to the point where they might have to take a slightly sour deal in order to shore up their relatively weak rotation (at least compared to their now-insane lineup).
R.J. White: If you're talking about teams looking for an outfielder with pitching to deal, you have to start with the Braves. Bourjos wouldn't be the answer as a leadoff hitter, but an outfield consisting of B.J. Upton, Bourjos and Jason Heyward would likely play fantastic defense. A deal revolving around Randall Delgado for Bourjos may make sense for both sides.
The Mets have plenty of pitching depth in the minors. So if they really want one of the Angels' outfielders, they can still put together a nice package. It may not necessarily be one revolving around MLB-ready pitching, though. You can't count the Rays out on those outfielders, either, even with Wil Myers now in tow. And they have plenty of pitching to burn.
A Rays-Angels trade scenario probably makes the most sense for both parties, but I wouldn't count the Braves out.
For more up-to-the-minute news and analysis on the latest rumors from bloggers Chris Cwik, Jack Moore and R.J. White, follow @MLBRumorsCBS.