The Angels have signed 29-year old righty swinging 3B Andy Marte to a minor league deal. Marte played in 96 games in Independent ball in 2013 and he was 111 of 369 (.301 avg, .893 OPS) with 61 runs scored, 19 homers and 74 RBIs. Marte last played in the majors back in 2010 with the Cleveland Indians. Marte has played in 302 games in his first six years in the majors and he is 183 of 838 (.218 avg, .635 OPS) with 85 runs scored, 20 homers, 96 RBIs and 1 stolen base. Marte will begin his career in AAA-ball for the Angels.
The Angels have signed 31-year old lefty starting pitcher Dontrelle Willis to a minor league deal and they have sent him to AAA. Willis pitched in 14 games (all starts) in Independent ball earlier this year and he was 5-4 with a 2.57 ERA and a 1.38 WHIP. Willis last pitched in the majors for the Reds back in 2011. Willis has pitched in 205 games (202 starts) in his first 9 years in the majors and he is 72-69 with a 4.17 ERA and a 1.43 WHIP. If never hurts to take a flier on a pitcher like the D-Train.
28-year old righty reliever Ernesto Frieri could be losing his hold on the closer’s job for the Angels. Since the All-Star Game, Frieri has worked in 7 games (0 starts) for the Angels and he is 0-2 with 4 saves, a 13.50 ERA and a 2.81 WHIP. He has now pitched in 46 games (0 starts) for the Angels so far this year and he is 0-3 with 26 saves, a 4.11 ERA and a 1.35 WHIP. He has only given up 36 hits and 26 walks while whiffing 69 batters in his first 46 innings this year, so he misses a lot of bats. That being said, he needs to tighten his control if he wants to keep the closer’s job much longer.
The Angels have sent 30-year old switch-hitting 3B Alberto Callaspo to the A’s for 25-year old righty swinging 2B/OF Grant Green. Callaspo played in 85 games for the Angels this year and he was 74 of 293 (.253 avg, .671 OPS) with 32 runs scored, 5 homers and 36 RBIs. Callaspo played in 422 games in his four years with the Angels and he was 379 of 1,438 (.264 avg, .691 OPS) with 162 runs scored, 23 homers, 148 RBIs and 4 stolen bases. Green came into this season as the A’s #8 prospect according to Baseball America. He played in 5 games for the A’s this year and he was 0 for 15 (.000 avg, .000 OPS) with 1 RBI. Green has also played in 87 games in AAA-ball for the A’s this year and he is 123 of 378 (.325 avg, .879 OPS) with 66 runs scored, 11 homers, 50 RBIs and 4 stolen bases. Green has now played in 475 games in his first five years in the minors and he is 612 of 1,999 (.306 avg, .823 OPS) with 324 runs scored, 55 homers, 277 RBIs and 33 stolen bases. This was a good deal for the Angels as Green might be able to help them in the very, very near future.
30-year old righty starting pitcher Jered Weaver has been excellent in July for the Angels. He has pitched in 6 games (all starts) in July for the Angels and he is 4-1 with a 1.32 ERA and a 0.95 WHIP. Weaver has now pitched in 14 games (all starts) for the Angels so far this year and he is 5-5 with a 2.84 ERA and a 1.12 WHIP. Weaver has given up 77 hits and 22 walks while whiffing 73 batters in his first 88 2/3 innings so far this year, and those are really good numbers. If Weaver would have not gotten hurt this year, the Angels might not be sellers at the trade deadline.
The Angels have designated 34-year old lefty swinging 1B/OF Brad Hawpe for assignment. Hawpe played in 17 games for the Angels this year and he was 5 for 27 (.185 avg, .498 OPS) with 2 runs scored, 0 homers and 2 RBIs. Hawpe has now played in 910 games in his first 9 years in the majors and he is 806 of 2,934 (.275 avg, .845 OPS) with 400 runs scored, 124 homers, 492 RBIs and 13 stolen bases. This isn’t much of a loss for the Angels moving forward.
UPDATE: (8/4/2013) - The Angels have released Brad Hawpe.
The Angels have dealt 37-year old lefty reliever Scott Downs to the Atlanta Braves for 25-year old righty reliever Cory Rasmus. Downs pitched in 43 games (0 starts) for the Angels this year and he was 2-3 with a 1.84 ERA and a 1.26 WHIP. Downs pitched in 160 games (0 starts) in his three years with the Angels and he was 9-7 with 10 saves, a 2.10 ERA and a 1.17 WHIP. Rasmus pitched in 3 games (0 starts) earlier this year in his first taste of the majors for the Braves and he was 0-0 with a 8.10 ERA and a 1.65 WHIP. He has also pitched in 37 games (0 starts) in AAA-ball this year in which he is 3-1 with 14 saves, a 1.72 ERA and a 1.15 WHIP. He has only given up 20 hits while whiffing 48 batters in his first 36 2/3 innings in the minors this year, which are impressive numbers, but he has also walked 22 batters and that’s way too many. Rasmus has now pitched in 143 games (35 starts) in his first seven years in the minors and he is 17-22 with 24 saves, a 3.61 ERA and a 1.29 WHIP. The Angels are going to miss Downs, but they got a decent prospect for him, so this deal made sense.
33-year old righty swinging 1B Albert Pujols has been placed on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to July 27th, due to a left plantar fascia problem. If he elects to have surgery (a distinct possibility), it will end his 2013 season. Pujols has played in 99 games for the Angels this year and he is 101 of 391 (.258 avg, .767 OPS) with 49 runs scored, 17 homers, 64 RBIs and 1 stolen base. Pujols has now played in 253 games in his first two years with the Angels and he is 274 of 998 (.275 avg, .823 OPS) with 134 runs scored, 47 homers, 169 RBIs and 9 stolen bases. 27-year old righty swinging Mark Trumbo will take over as the full-time 1B for the Angels now. He has played in 102 games for the Angels so far this year and he is 98 of 392 (.250 avg, .786 OPS) with 53 runs scored, 22 homers, 60 RBIs and 2 stolen bases. With the way Pujols was running this year, I’m surprised he gutted it out this long.
The Angels have acquired 23-year old righty swinging outfielder Julio Concepcion and 22-year old righty reliever/starter Andres Perez from the New York Mets for cash. Concepcion played in 6 games in A-ball for the Mets this year and he was 5 for 21 (.238 avg, .524 OPS) with 2 runs scored, 0 homers and 3 RBIs. Concepcion has now played in 301 games in his first seven years in the minors and he is 309 of 1,115 (.277 avg, .727 OPS) with 157 runs scored, 13 homers, 145 RBIs and 27 stolen bases. Perez pitched in 7 games (1 start) in Rookie-ball for the Mets this year and he was 0-1 with a 5.52 ERA and a 1.36 WHIP. Perez has now pitched in 60 games (23 starts) in his first five years in the minors and he is 9-12 with 2 saves, a 3.68 ERA and a 1.37 WHIP. I like this move for the Angels.
The Angels have designated 29-year old righty starter/reliever Billy Buckner for assignment for the second time this year. Buckner pitched in 7 games (2 starts) for the Angels this year and he was 1-0 with a 4.67 ERA and a 1.39 WHIP. Buckner has also pitched in 12 games (all starts) in AAA-ball for the Angels in which he is 6-2 with a 4.50 ERA and a 1.49 WHIP. The Angels are hoping that Buckner slips through waivers and accepts an outright assignment to AAA, so they can keep him in the organization.
UPDATE: (7/28/2013) - Billy Buckner has cleared waivers and he has been outrighted to AAA.