The Los Angeles Angels feel as though they are at a turning point this season. General manager Perry Minasian did his best to build a roster with one-year contracts and proven veterans, but injuries and various struggles have given them a 21-27 record through 48 games. This is far from where they wanted to be, especially after starting the season 7-3.
If their record wasn’t already enough reason for concern, they are without superstar Mike Trout for at least another 5-7 weeks after suffering a Grade 2 right calf strain. While the team certainly wants to do him a favor and win games in his absence, it’s worth wondering if they will even be in playoff contention by the time he returns.
Because of Trout’s injury and a number of other factors, Minasian stressed the importance of the next month as it pertains to the future of the Angels, according to J.P. Hoornstra of The O.C. Register:
“The next month is obviously very important,” Minasian said. “It’s early in the season. From the front office standpoint, you’re looking at the short term and long term day in and day out. … The next month and a half hopefully we play better. We expect to play better. That’ll take care of itself.”
“There’s some exciting players on this team,” Minasian said. “It’s early in the season. There’s a lot of season left. Walking through that room, knowing the personnel we have, the personalities, this is not a team I would give up on.”
Obviously, the hope is that the Angels can rally behind their current two-game win streak — prior to the finale of their two-game set with the Texas Rangers — to get back to .500 and in playoff contention.
However, with the amount of one-year contracts and proven veterans that Minasian signed, it’s worth exploring the possibility of being sellers at the MLB trade deadline if the Angels can’t put wins together quickly.
This is the same fate the Angels were left with the last three seasons, when they were below .500 well before the deadline approached. While it would be disappointing to see that same result despite the amount of talent on the roster, it would give them a chance to load up on some prospects before gearing up for 2022.
How the Angels perform over the next few weeks will directly affect their plans. If they want to stay together for this year and beyond, it’s up to them to start winning some games and putting their names back into the postseason picture.
Jo Adell making progress in Triple-A
While Angels manager Joe Maddon made it clear that he was not ready to be called back up, Jo Adell is showing signs of improvement in Triple-A Salt Lake. He has been slugging the ball incredibly well in the early part of the Minor League season, and has improved his fielding as well.
Being one of the major long-term pieces the Angels have, he will be greatly impacted by the team’s performance and will be kept in mind as Minasian makes decisions about the future.