Without ‘Internal Talent’ From Farm System, Angels Have Suffered
Rocket City, Double-A
Angels Double-A afiiliate Rocket City Trash Pandas.

The last time the Los Angeles Angels made the playoffs was in 2014. It has been the only time they’ve made the playoffs with Mike Trout in an Angels uniform, and the last time they won a playoff series was in 2005.

Although some of their mega-contracts have failed, their lack of a farm system to produce a steady, or even a trickle of consistent MLB-ready talent, to supplement their big league roster has held them back.

In the past three seasons, the Angels have ranked near the bottom in Minor League rankings according to MLB.com, wrapping up the year with the 30th-ranked farm system. From 2013-2017, they were the worst, and it has accounted for their lack of production from homegrown players.

Baseball America ranked them as one of the bottom-two systems five times in the last 10 years, something that Angels general manager, Perry Minasian, admitted is a tough hurdle to overcome at the Major League level, via Jeff Fletcher of the O.C. Register:

“In today’s game, it’s very difficult to consistently put a contending product on the field without having internal talent come through the ranks,” Angels general manager Perry Minasian said. “It just is.”

When teams such as the L.A. Dodgers and Houston Astros, who just captured another World Series title, consistently draft, acquire and develop talent to succeed in MLB, the differences in quality of seasons have a clearly different look:

“It doesn’t take a rocket scientist,” said Marcel Lachemann, who spent 55 years in professional baseball before resigning his role as an Angels special assistant this year. “The biggest bang for your dollar that you’re going to get in baseball is to develop your own players. There’s no doubt.”

But after another abysmal first half of the season, Minasian hit a minor ‘reset’ button and made a few moves to bring in the Angels catcher of the future in Logan O’Hoppe, the team’s new No. 1 prospect. A few of their young arms such as Reid Detmers have had a fair amount of early positives and there are a couple of names to keep an eye out for:

“I think they’re on the uptick,” said one rival scout who saw the entire Angels system in 2022. “They have every reason to be optimistic.”

With another third-place season in the books, the Angels need to shift toward a more focused approach and place more of an emphasis on building from within. Follow the mold of the top-end teams around MLB and identify the reason for their organizational dysfunction, which might stem from Angels owner Arte Moreno, who is on the verge of selling the team.

Angels select four players in Rule 5 Draft

The Angels selected catcher Ronaldo Flores and right-hander, Willian Suarez from the Richmond Flying Squirrels of the San Francisco Giants, center fielder Jared Olivia from the Altoona Curve of the Pittsburgh Pirates, and Riley Unroe from the Arkansas Travelers of the Seattle Mariners during the Minor League phase of the Rule 5 Draft.

The team also lost Zach Linginfelter from Rocket City Trash Pandas to Leigh Valley IronPigs of the Philadelphia Phillies.

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