Tag:ALberto Callaspo
Posted on: February 2, 2012 12:55 pm
 

Dipoto responds to fan trade request by letter



By Matt Snyder


Considering the offseason the Angels just had, where they signed Albert Pujols and C.J. Wilson within hours of one another, new general manager Jerry Dipoto has to be a fan favorite. And it just keeps getting better.

Have you ever thought about writing a letter to the GM of your favorite team with a trade suggestion? I'd guess through the years most of us die-hard baseball fans have. Well, a fan named Aaron recently wrote Dipoto and actually heard back -- in the form of a personally hand-written response from Dipoto.

Aaron's proposal was to trade Bobby Abreu and Alberto Callaspo to the Orioles for a pair of minor-leaguers who finished last season in High-A ball. My guess is Aaron's thinking it would be a salary dump that could also free a lineup spot for phenom Mike Trout (if Vernon Wells was moved to DH and Mark Trumbo worked out at third). It makes a great deal of sense for the Angels. 

Here was Dipoto's response, via the OC Register:
Aaron,

A quick note to thank you for your recent letter. I enjoyed reading your thoughts and the creative idea you shared. Clearly you have a solid knowledge of the league and potential “players” on the horizon. Unfortunately, trades are always very complex, as you alluded to in your letter. Salaries and finance tend to become an overriding factor.

Know that I do appreciate the suggestion and creativity you’ve shown.

All my best, Jerry Dipoto
That's awesome. Kudos to Dipoto for taking the time to respond to one of his fans. Now he should probably brace for a lot more ideas, since word of this has gotten out.

Hat-tip: Big League Stew

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Posted on: December 6, 2011 1:27 pm
 

Homegrown Team: Los Angeles Angels



By Matt Snyder


What if players were only permitted to stay with the team that originally made them a professional? No trades, no Rule-5 Draft, no minor or major league free agency ... once you are a professional baseball player, you stay in that organization. This series shows how all 30 teams would look. We give you: Homegrown teams. To view the entire schedule and past posts, click here.

While we slog through all the rumors and real-life moves provided by the Winter Meetings, we're here with your daily break from reality. This time around, it's the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

Lineup

1. Erick Aybar, SS
2. Casey Kotchman, 1B
3. Howie Kendrick, LF
4. Mike Napoli, C
5. Mark Trumbo, DH
6. Mike Trout, RF
7. Sean Rodriguez, 2B
8. Alberto Callaspo, 3B
9. Peter Bourjos, CF

Note: Kendrys Morales is here, too, though he's been down with a broken leg for almost two seasons. If healthy, he figures in the DH/1B mix prominently, likely pushing Trumbo to the bench -- but I'd hear arguments for Kotchman to sit instead.

Starting Rotation

1. Jered Weaver
2. Ervin Santana
3. John Lackey
4. Tyler Chatwood
5. Joe Saunders

Bullpen

Closer - Francisco Rodriguez
Set up - Jordan Walden, Bobby Jenks, Darren O'Day, Sean O'Sullivan, Trevor Bell, Kevin Jepsen, Jose Arredondo
Long - Ramon Ortiz

Notable Bench Players

Hank Conger, Jeff Mathis, Alexi Casilla and that's about it.

What's Good?

The front of the starting rotation with Weaver and Santana is very good. The bottom of the lineup is pretty strong, relatively speaking, as those guys could be two-hole hitters on many teams.

What's Not?

There just isn't much exciting about this group. The middle of the lineup is thin, until Trout becomes a star. There is no depth and the rotation is a bit lackluster with Lackey and Saunders, at this point.

Comparison to real 2011

The real-life Angels finished 86-76 and 10 games behind the Rangers in the AL West. They hung around in the wild-card race until the last week of the season, too. While this team certainly isn't terrible, I feel like it's worse than 86 wins. Maybe they could approach .500, but there's just not enough here to be a playoff contender in this fictitious exercise.

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Posted on: November 7, 2011 3:00 pm
 

Monday trade sets stage for busy Hot Stove season



By Matt Snyder


Sure, Derek Lowe was dealt to the Indians in a salary dump and we've seen a few signings, but things have been pretty slow of late in Major League Baseball news. When the biggest name to sign a contract with a new team thus far is a backup first baseman/pinch-hitter (Jim Thome), it says everything you need to know about this past week in actual transactions. So forgive us for loving Melky Cabrera and Jonathan Sanchez swapping addresses. It's something, and it serves as a nice little unofficial start to the Hot Stove season.

With just one week to the general manager meetings in Milwaukee, it's time to focus on other potential trade candidates. Obviously rumors don't always come to fruition and we're shocked with non-rumored trades going down on occasion, but here are some names that either make sense or have been rumored to be on the move in the recent past.

• The White Sox's farm system is in absolute shambles and the major-league club doesn't appear ready to compete with the Tigers any time soon, so it's possible general manager Kenny Williams decides to rebuild. Since Adam Dunn and Alex Rios have no trade value, Gavin Floyd, John Danks and Carlos Quentin would be the parts most likely to move.

Orioles starter Jeremy Guthrie is a free agent after the 2012 season and he could be a helpful four or five starter for a contender. He's thrown at least 190 innings in each of the past four seasons.

Hot Stove Season
• Do new Cubs executives Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer look to cut the sunk costs of Carlos Zambrano and Alfonso Soriano? They'd have to eat a significant portion of the remaining salaries (and for Soriano it's $54 million left on the deal), but the duo isn't helping the Cubs win in 2012. Also, Marlon Byrd only has one year left on his contract and prospect Brett Jackson will likely be ready to take over in center soon. The guess is Byrd has more value by the trade deadline in '12, though.

Rays center fielder B.J. Upton has long been rumored to be a trade candidate, and this winter it might finally happen with Desmond Jennings clearly ready to take over in center. Also, if the Rays are ready to deal a starting pitcher, Jeff Niemann is most likely.

Denard Span was rumored to be a trade candidate back in July, and the Twins could part with their center fielder to shore up the pitching staff.

We've already heard the rumors about Jair Jurrjens and Martin Prado from Atlanta, but it's possible since talks fizzled with the Royals that the Braves just hold both.

• Do the Angels try to shed Alberto Callaspo and/or Maicer Izturis and then land free agent Aramis Ramirez at third? They probably would need to shed more payroll in order to do so.

• Starting pitchers Wandy Rodriguez and Brett Myers could easily be on the move from Houston, but the guess is the ownership situation would need to be resolved first.

• After a disappointing 2011 season, the Rockies have plenty of trade candidates. Chris Iannetta probably stays put, but Huston Street, Ian Stewart, Seth Smith and Ty Wigginton all make sense in potential deals.

Dodgers first baseman James Loney finished 2011 with a bang, which might mean it's the Dodgers last chance to get something of value in return for him. There are a few small-market matches, too, including the Indians.

• Finally, as we've already noted, the A's have put basically the entire team on the block.

So fasten your seatbelts, the action has only just begun.

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Posted on: October 9, 2011 4:47 pm
Edited on: October 10, 2011 3:52 pm
 

R.I.P. 2011 L.A. Angels of Anaheim

By Matt Snyder

Another season gone, another disappointment for 29 teams as one is immortalized forever. Let’s take a look back at 2011 and forward in Eye on Baseball’s R.I.P. series...

Team name: Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
Record: 86-76, second place in AL West, 10 games back.
Manager: Mike Scioscia
Best hitter: Howard Kendrick -- .285/.338/.464, 18 HR, 63 RBI, 86 R, 14 SB, 30 2B
Best pitcher: Jered Weaver -- 18-8, 2.41 ERA, 1.01 WHIP, 198 K, 235.2 IP

2011 SEASON RECAP

The Angels hung in the race all season, eventually missing out on the AL wild card by five games. They were in first place as late as July 5, and didn't really fall out of the AL West race until the middle of September. They exceeded the expectations, according to many preseason predictions, but the failure to make the postseason for the second year in a row was evidently not acceptable for owner Arte Moreno. He absolutely cleaned house in the front office. The Angels did win the AL West five out of six seasons before 2010, so the bar has been set. Moreno seemingly wants division titles or else.

R.I.P. series
2012 AUDIT

The Angles already have over $102 million committed to next season in player contracts, and that's without including the salaries of arbitration players like Howie Kendrick, Erick Aybar and Alberto Callaspo, who are certainly going to have raises. Basically, the Angles are going to have somewhere around $125 million in payroll before even looking at possible free agents. Thus, if they want to make a big splash, the new general manager, whoever it is, will probably have to back-load contracts. The more likely path is to look for internal improvement from the young players like Tyler Chatwood, Jordan Walden, Mark Trumbo and uber-prospect Mike Trout. Getting Kendrys Morales back healthy would be a huge boost as well. The Angels do have a strong minor-league system, but most of the help is a few years away.

FREE AGENTS

Russell Branyan, 1B
Joel Pineiro, SP
Fernando Rodney, RP

OFFSEASON FOCUS

If any big contracts are handed out, it needs to be a younger free agent that has proven durable and consistent. Huge contracts to veterans past their prime are stifling the organization right now.
  • Hire a general manager who stops trying to fill short-term holes with huge salary veterans. High-salary players are OK for a large market team like the Angels, but that's seemingly been the only answer in recent seasons.
  • Let Trout play everyday. Torii Hunter, Peter Bourjos, Vernon Wells and Bobby Abreu can share two spots in some fashion while occasionally filling the designated hitter spot (but I have a different plan for that). The Wells trade was a disaster and Abreu makes far too much money for his current level of production, but what's done is done. You can't let salaries dictate playing time.
  • Keep Morales at designated hitter for the entire season. Trumbo can play first and Kendrick can fill in when Trumbo gets days off. Morales' leg injury was obviously devastating, so the Angels should do everything possible to keep his bat in the lineup. One of the offense's biggest problems was that -- while there are several really good hitters -- the lack of one big bat hurts. Trumbo hit 29 homers, but his OBP was a horrible .291. Until Trout is ready to be a superstar, and remember, he's only 20, Morales has to be "the guy" for the Angels. So protect his health.
  • Hank Conger is only 23 and was a good hitter in the minors. Jeff Mathis is an awful hitter, but Scioscia keeps him as the primary catcher because he's in love with his defense -- it's why the Angels traded Mike Napoli. Conger should at least get a lot more of a look behind the plate, but who knows if Scioscia will let that happen.
  • What money the Angels do have will probably be spent on a one-year starting pitcher. They won't be breaking the bank or anything, but they don't need a front-line ace. They have two, and Ervin Santana is a fine No. 3. Pineiro coming back would be an option. Otherwise you're looking at Jason Marquis or Jeff Francis types. At that point, it's possible the new GM just saves the money and goes with Jerome Williams again. There's no reason to spend more money on a marginal upgrade. Garrett Richards, 23, could probably use some seasoning in Triple-A, so there is only a need for one year. Maybe they start the year with Williams and keep him there until Richards is deemed ready.
  • Overall, it's tough to tell what's going to happen, because the entire front office has been cleaned out and there are several large -- and probably untradeable -- contracts. They may just have to tread water for a season. The good news is the low levels of the minors are stocked with good talent and the bad contracts will all be cleared in a few years. Whoever takes the GM job is walking into a situation to thrive within the next three seasons, with a combination of a strong, youthful foundation and being able to spend big dollars on free agents starting in 2012.
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Posted on: September 7, 2011 2:34 am
 

3 Up, 3 Down: Wilson records first shutout

C.J. Wilson

By C. Trent Rosecrans

C.J. Wilson, Rangers: There's no question that the Rangers can put runs on the board with anyone, but the question is if they have that Game 1 starter in a series to go opposite the likes of CC Sabathia, Josh Beckett or Justin Verlander. Last season the Game 1 starter was an easy decision for Ron Washington, that's what they got Cliff Lee to do. This season it's going to be Wilson, who notched his first career shutout on Tuesday, blanking the Rays 8-0 on five hits, all singles. It was the Rangers' 18th shutout of the season, the most by an American League team since Oakland had 19 in 2002. Wilson is now 15-6 with a 3.13 ERA.

Bryan LaHair, Cubs: Reds starter Mike Leake cruised all game -- going 8 2/3 innings and allowing just one batter above the minimum and one hit. But on a 2-2 count, Starlin Castro hit a nubber down the third-base line for an infield single, bringing up LaHair as a pinch hitter for Darwin Barney. With a 2-0 count, Leake gave the rookie something to hit -- and he did, onto Sheffield Ave. It was LaHair's first homer as a Cub (he hit three in 2008 with the Mariners) after clubbing 38 in the Pacific Coast League this season. LaHair gave the fans at Wrigley Field some free baseball, but in the end, it wasn't enough as the Reds won 4-2 in 13 innings.

Troy Tulowitzki, Rockies: Going into Monday's game, Troy Tulowitzki was hitting just .113 (6 for 35) against the Diamondbacks this season. After a three-run homer in Monday's loss to the Rockies, he hit a three-run homer in the eighth inning of Tuesday's 8-3 victory at Coors Field. It was Tulowitzki's 30th homer of the season and gave him 103 RBI, a career-high.


Fausto Carmona, Indians: Any hope the Indians had of representing the American League Central in the playoffs were seemingly dashed in Carmona's 1 1/3 innings -- the Indians' opening-day starter allowed eight hits and seven runs in his brief starts as Cleveland lost 10-1 to Detroit at Progressive Field and fell 8.5 games behind the Tigers in the AL Central. Carmona is now 6-14 with a 5.18 ERA on the season.

Angels defense: After Texas had already won their game, the Angels committed four errors -- three of which led to two unearned runs and an Angels loss to the Mariners. Seattle's Felix Hernandez didn't need more than two runs, as he allowed just one run (unearned as well) on four hits in eight innings for a 2-1 Mariners victory. After a Justin Smoak single to lead off the Mariners' half of the second, Los Angeles third baseman Alberto Callaspo fielded a soft grounder by Miguel Olivo, and instead of taking the sure out at first, he tried to force it to second, throwing the ball in right. Kyle Seager then reached first to load the bases on an error by pitcher Ervin Santana. Trayvon Washington hit a sacrifice fly for the game's first run. Seattle's second run came in the fourth after Seager reached first on an error by Erick Aybar and then scored on a groundout later in the inning. Hank Conger added another error for the team's fourth of the game. With the loss, the Angels fell to 3.5 games behind the Rangers in the AL West.

Minnesota Twins: Minnesota was officially eliminated from playoff contention with a 3-0 loss to the White Sox on Tuesday as they were shutout for the 12th time this season. The Twins tied a season-high with 12 strikeouts, including two from Joe Mauer. Minnesota now trails Detroit by 22 games and are 1.5 games behind the Royals in the fight for last place in the AL Central.

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Posted on: September 7, 2011 2:33 am
 

3 Up, 3 Down: Wilson records first shutout

C.J. Wilson

By C. Trent Rosecrans

C.J. Wilson, Rangers: There's no question that the Rangers can put runs on the board with anyone, but the question is if they have that Game 1 starter in a series to go opposite the likes of CC Sabathia, Josh Beckett or Justin Verlander. Last season the Game 1 starter was an easy decision for Ron Washington, that's what they got Cliff Lee to do. This season it's going to be Wilson, who notched his first career shutout on Tuesday, blanking the Rays 8-0 on five hits, all singles. It was the Rangers' 18th shutout of the season, the most by an American League team since Oakland had 19 in 2002. Wilson is now 15-6 with a 3.13 ERA.

Bryan LaHair, Cubs: Reds starter Mike Leake cruised all game -- going 8 2/3 innings and allowing just one batter above the minimum and one hit. But on a 2-2 count, Starlin Castro hit a nubber down the third-base line for an infield single, bringing up LaHair as a pinch hitter for Darwin Barney. With a 2-0 count, Leake gave the rookie something to hit -- and he did, onto Sheffield Ave. It was LaHair's first homer as a Cub (he hit three in 2008 with the Mariners) after clubbing 38 in the Pacific Coast League this season. LaHair gave the fans at Wrigley Field some free baseball, but in the end, it wasn't enough as the Reds won 4-2 in 13 innings.

Troy Tulowitzki, Rockies: Going into Monday's game, Troy Tulowitzki was hitting just .113 (6 for 35) against the Diamondbacks this season. After a three-run homer in Monday's loss to the Rockies, he hit a three-run homer in the eighth inning of Tuesday's 8-3 victory at Coors Field. It was Tulowitzki's 30th homer of the season and gave him 103 RBI, a career-high.


Fausto Carmona, Indians: Any hope the Indians had of representing the American League Central in the playoffs were seemingly dashed in Carmona's 1 1/3 innings -- the Indians' opening-day starter allowed eight hits and seven runs in his brief starts as Cleveland lost 10-1 to Detroit at Progressive Field and fell 8.5 games behind the Tigers in the AL Central. Carmona is now 6-14 with a 5.18 ERA on the season.

Angels defense: After Texas had already won their game, the Angels committed four errors -- three of which led to two unearned runs and an Angels loss to the Mariners. Seattle's Felix Hernandez didn't need more than two runs, as he allowed just one run (unearned as well) on four hits in eight innings for a 2-1 Mariners victory. After a Justin Smoak single to lead off the Mariners' half of the second, Los Angeles third baseman Alberto Callaspo fielded a soft grounder by Miguel Olivo, and instead of taking the sure out at first, he tried to force it to second, throwing the ball in right. Kyle Seager then reached first to load the bases on an error by pitcher Ervin Santana. Trayvon Washington hit a sacrifice fly for the game's first run. Seattle's second run came in the fourth after Seager reached first on an error by Erick Aybar and then scored on a groundout later in the inning. Hank Conger added another error for the team's fourth of the game. With the loss, the Angels fell to 3.5 games behind the Rangers in the AL West.

Minnesota Twins: Minnesota was officially eliminated from playoff contention with a 3-0 loss to the White Sox on Tuesday as they were shutout for the 12th time this season. The Twins tied a season-high with 12 strikeouts, including two from Joe Mauer. Minnesota now trails Detroit by 22 games and are 1.5 games behind the Royals in the fight for last place in the AL Central.

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Posted on: August 24, 2011 2:53 am
 

3 Up, 3 Down: Burroughs hits 1st homer since '05

Sean Burroughs

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Sean Burroughs, Diamondbacks: Burroughs' first home run since April 30, 2005, accounted for the only two runs of Tuesday's 2-0 victory over the Nationals, snapping Arizona's six-game losing streak. Ian Kennedy pitched seven shutout innings, but it was Burroughs' shot with one on and one out in the seventh off of Jordan Zimmermann that was the story of the game. Burroughs, 30, hadn't been in the big leagues since 2006 before being called up earlier this year after a disappointing start to his career. Before signing with the Diamondbacks this past offseason, he was battling substance abuse.

Shin-Soo Choo, Indians: Choo celebrated the birth of his third child Monday and then had a big day Tuesday, going 4 for 8 in a doubleheader against the Mariners, including a walk-off three-run homer in the first game that delivered the Indians a 7-5 victory and snapped a four-game losing streak for Cleveland. The Indians lost the second game, but Choo added another homer, as well as a triple in the nightcap. Choo finished the day with five RBI and even hit a double during Tuesday's earthquake. Indians manager Manny Acta called Choo earlier on Tuesday to make sure his outfielder was available to play -- luckily for the Indians, he was available.

Yonder Alonso, Reds: Dusty Baker gave Joey Votto a rare day off Tuesday, letting the rookie Alonso get the start in South Florida, where he grew up and played college ball at Miami. Not only did Alonso homer on the first pitch he saw on the night, but he also broke a tie with a two-out, two-run double in the ninth inning in front of his friends and family for a 8-6 Reds victory


Brandon Morrow, Blue Jays: The Blue Jays' right-hander has some of the best stuff in the big leagues, but the 27-year-old has never found any kind of consistency. In his last start before Tuesday, Morrow struck out a dozen Mariners in six innings. Tuesday he gave up nearly that many hits in just 4 2/3 innings against the Royals. Kansas City had two doubles, a triple and two home runs among their 11 hits in the 25 batters Morrow faced in a 6-4 Toronto loss.

Kyle Lohse, Cardinals: Coming into the game, Lohse had allowed just three earned runs over his last 13 1/3 innings -- he gave up that many before he retired a batter on Tuesday on a three-run homer by Matt Kemp. Lohse allowed four more runs in the second inning and then a solo homer to Rod Barajas in the fourth inning. Lohse was lifted after three innings in St. Louis' 13-2 loss to the Dodgers.

White Sox: Sloppy play all around hurt Chicago in a 5-4 loss to the Angels, starting with two first-inning errors and then a mental mistake in the ninth. Peter Bourjos reached in the first inning on a throwing error by Alexei Ramirez and then scored on a fielding error by Juan Pierre in the same inning. In the seventh inning, catcher Tyler Flowers avoided a double play by taking off before Brent Morel's grounder, but got greedy by trying to advance to third where he was thrown out by first baseman Mark Trumbo to end the inning. Then in the ninth, second baseman Gordon Beckham failed to cover second on Alberto Callaspo's single, allowing Callaspo to advance to second base, taking away the double play. After an intentional walk to Maircer Izturis, Bourjos singled in the game-ending run.

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Posted on: June 16, 2011 7:17 pm
Edited on: June 16, 2011 7:51 pm
 

Report: Moreno says no more spending

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Arte MorenoAnaheim is hardly out of the American League West race, just three games behind leader Texas and 2 1/2 games behind second-place Seattle, but owner Arte Moreno has already told general manager Tony Reagins not to spend any more money this season, ESPNLosAngeles.com's Mark Saxon writes.

Saxon cites a "baseball source" as saying the Angels won't spend any more money for the rest of the season after eating what was left of Scott Kazmir's $14.5 million salary this season and taking on the albatross contract of .193-hitting Vernon Wells. Oh, and they're still paying Gary Matthews Jr. $12.4 million this season for a grand total around $140 million for the team's 2011 payroll.

The Angels can still make move, but they won't be able to take on any payroll, so a deal would have to be a wash financially or in the Angels' favor.

Reagins has shown a willingness to deal at the deadline in recent years. The Angels added Mark Teixeira in 2008 at the trade deadline and Kazmir a year later. Last year the Angels picked up Alberto Callaspo and Dan Haren for a stretch run. 

The Angels could try to unload Joel Pineiro ($8 million) and Fernando Rodney ($5.5 million) in a search for more offense. They could also try to move Bobby Abreu, who has a vesting option worth $9 million for next season with another 147 plate appearances.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com