An Early Projection Of Angels’ 2023 Total Salaries
Mike Trout, Shohei Ohtani
Stephen Brashear-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Angels spent approximately $187 million building their 2022 roster. In 2021, that figure was about $190 million. In fact, the Angels have hovered between $175 and $190 million in payroll for several seasons now, and have not made the postseason since 2014.

Perry Minasian and the Angels organization have said that they’ll do what is required of them to improve the roster ahead of 2023. However, with an ownership sale potentially ongoing and a lack of clarity regarding Shohei Ohtani’s future with the club, it may be hard for Minasian to spend above what has become the norm in Anaheim.

That’s part of why it was important to get an early agreement from Ohtani to avoid his final year of arbitration. The two sides agreed to a one-year, $30 million deal. It’s a relative bargain for L.A., and it gives them a better sense of where their payroll stands with regard to big money returners.

They still have seven arbitration-eligible players to sort out, as well as a host of pre-arbitration guys before they begin to make calculations on major free agents and trades.

Here, we’ll break down the current 2023 payroll for the Angels and where it leaves them ahead of the hot stove season.

Guaranteed salaries

The Angels currently have just seven salaries on their books for 2023. However, just these seven make up a hefty sum.

3B Anthony Rendon – $38,571,428
CF Mike Trout – $37,116,666
SP/DH Shohei Ohtani – $30,000,000
RP Aaron Loup – $7,500,000
C Max Stassi – $7,000,000
RP Ryan Tepera – $7,000,000
2B David Fletcher – $6,000,000

Total – $133,188,094

With only seven of the 26 roster spots filled, the Angels are already at over $130 million in salaries. Of these seven, six are coming off of years that were either worse than their usual output (Stassi, Loup, Tepera), injury-filled (Trout), or both (Rendon, Fletcher).

Arbitration-eligible players

The following players are eligible for arbitration in 2023, meaning they’ll either agree to terms on a deal with the Angels, or they’ll have the chance to fight for their salary in a hearing. Each player’s 2022 salary and year of arbitration will appear next to the name.

RP Jaime Barria – $730,000 (Arb 1)
SP Griffin Canning – $730,000 (Arb 2)
SS Luis Rengifo – $576,900 (Arb 1)
SP Patrick Sandoval – $720,000 (Arb 1)
1B Jared Walsh – $730,000 (Arb 1)
RF Taylor Ward – $720,000 (Arb 1)
RP Zack Weiss – $130,764 (Arb 3)

Rengifo, Sandoval, and Ward are due for big raises in 2023. All three are coming off of career years that saw them become pillars of the Angels future. Especially Sandoval, who cemented himself as perhaps the Angels best starting pitcher after Ohtani.

It’s difficult to estimate exactly what these seven players will receive in total, but the assumption is that at least five will receive raises.

Pre-Arbitration Players

The following players are not yet eligible for arbitration, meaning the Angels can assign a contract value without a significant ability to negotiate. The players will be listed without salaries, but will affect the 2023 payroll at an average rate of about $700,000 per player.

OF Jo Adell
SP Tucker Davidson
SP Reid Detmers
RP Jimmy Herget
OF Mickey Moniak
C Logan O’Hoppe
RP Jose Quijada
RP Chris Rodriguez
SP Jose Suarez
C Matt Thaiss
SS Andrew Velazquez
RP Andrew Wantz
RP Rob Zastryzny

13 players are listed above, with only five — Detmers, Herget, Quijada, Suarez, and Wantz — being virtual locks to make the Opening Day roster. It is assumed that Adell, Moniak, O’Hoppe, and Thaiss will be there as well, but that will involve Spring Training positional battles.

At the moment, it’s safe to assume that there are at least $145 million in salaries already on the books for 2023. Based on franchise history, that would give them another $35-$45 million in spend in trades and free agency.

But this offseason is different than any other in recent Angels history, making it impossible to project what they might be willing to spend. For now, we’ll have to wait and see what happens with ownership and other outside factors.

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