Ahead of Kansas City Royals free agency, let’s take a look at the Los Angeles Angels’ upcoming free agents and decide whether the team should pursue any.
Welcome to the continuation of our “Kansas City Royals: Making the case” series for free agency. Despite having one of the greatest players of the last 20 years in Mike Trout, the Los Angeles Angels missed the playoffs for the fifth-straight season and posted their worst record since 1999. Manager Brad Ausmus was fired after just one year on the job. If Los Angeles wants to capitalize on Trout’s prime while it can, it will have to improve (at least partially) via free agency.
With that said, there are seven Angels with the potential to hit the open market. If the club decides to part ways with any or all of them, those names will become blips on the radar of the Kansas City Royals. Should the club pursue anyone? Let’s find out.
Cahill pitched briefly with the Kansas City Royals in 2017 before being shipped out of town. In those 23 innings, the righty posted an 8.22 ERA and gave up 10 home runs. After a respectable 2018 season, Cahill came back down to earth in 2019 with Los Angeles. In 102.1 innings, Cahill’s ERA+ (76) and FIP (6.13) were… not good. The Royals don’t need a second look at him.
Kole Calhoun, RF
Some fans may remember Calhoun from the 2014 ALDS. As a matter of fact, 2014 was one of Calhoun’s best seasons. A lifetime .249 hitter, the left-handed right fielder’s 2019 line of .232/.325/.467 was a huge improvement when compared to the one he posted in 2018 (.208/.283/.369). Los Angeles has a $14 million club option for Calhoun in 2019 but even if they decline it, Kansas City can probably rest easy as night without going after him. He’s a decent power bat, but the Royals already have one of those who could be spending time in right field.
Verdict: Pass (unless the outfield picture becomes a lot clearer)
Justin Bour, 1B
Bour struggled last season in limited action. In his last complete season, 2018, he clubbed 20 home runs in 141 games and held a line of .227/.341/.404. After peaking in 2017, it appears his best baseball is behind him already at the age of 31. Ryan O’Hearn should get a second chance in 2020, so it’s not likely the Kansas City Royals need to go after Bour.
J.C. Ramirez, P
After going 11-10 with a 4.15 ERA in 2017, Ramirez has been limited to just 14.2 innings of MLB action over the last two seasons. That isn’t much to go off of. If Dayton Moore wants to take a flyer on him and try him out as a reliever, fine. If not, signing a 31-year-old starter with a recent injury history probably isn’t the wisest move.
Verdict: Potentially (but probably not)
Josh Thole, C
Thole has played in the minor leagues over the last couple of seasons and hasn’t appeared in a major league game since 2016. He’ll turn 33 in a few days. No thanks.
Hutchison had a 5.28 ERA at the Triple-A level last season and was a trainwreck in the MLB before that. See the last sentence from the Thole paragraph.
Josh Zeid, P
Zeid has not pitched at the major league level in half a decade. Seriously. The list gets down to pretty slim pickings at the end, and this is the icing on the cake.