Angels Rumors: Front Office Undecided On Trade Deadline Plans & Trading Shohei Ohtani
MLB: Los Angeles Angels at Baltimore Orioles
May 16, 2023; Baltimore, Maryland, USA; Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Shohei Ohtani (17) before the game against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

With the first half of the regular season in the books, the Los Angeles Angels have played themselves into a difficult spot as they sit in third place in the American League West.

Playing nearly .500 baseball through three months, Angels general manager Perry Minasian is in the same spot as last year as injuries have taken over the direct course of his roster. The most recent loss is Mike Trout after he suffered a fracture to his hamate bone in his left wrist.

The middling play has cast doubt on the Angels’ ability to seriously compete, and some believe that the front office could look to deal star two-way player Shohei Ohtani before it becomes too late. However, the front office is undecided on their next steps, per Jon Heyman of the New York Post:

The Angels are telling folks they will “know a lot more in the next two or three weeks” regarding their plans. Folks still have a hard time imagining owner Arte Moreno trading the game’s best current player, and maybe the best ever, even if he’s somehow convinced they have no chance to re-sign him. Even so, Angels people seem to be leaving open the slight possibility of an Ohtani blockbuster.

Coming off of perhaps the best month of June in league history in which he slugged 15 home runs with 29 RBI, 27 runs scored while carrying a wRC+ of 279. He has continued to play well in July despite a blister that has limited his performance on the mound.

The unfortunate turning point for the Angels and possibly having to trade Ohtani hinges on a few factors. The first is the return and if it justifies dealing one of the most skilled, unique players in the history of baseball. But also, if they deal him, it would clearly signal an organizational shift away from their current plan to win around Trout and Ohtani.

Angels & Mike Trout optimistic he’ll return in 2023

The news of Trout suffering a fractured bone in his wrist was difficult for the Angels and their fans to hear after the star centerfielder had been healthy for the first half of the season.

Trout was recently named to his 11th All-Star Game roster after posting a 137 wRC+ in 81 games including 18 home runs, 44 RBI, 54 runs scored and a 3.1 fWAR. Going into the Midsummer Classic was a big deal for the 31-year-old, but the injury put his season on hold.

After already undergoing surgery, Trout has a clear shot to return before the season’s end.

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