LOS ANGELES, March 3, 2013 — I don’t think there was a more disappointing finish in MLB than that of the Anaheim Angels of Anaheim. They obviously felt the same and made some major changes after missing the playoffs with an 89-73 record.
Anaheim dumped even more money into their offense with the Josh Hamilton signing, which will make them a lot better and make the Texas Rangers worse. The Albert Pujols-Josh Hamilton-Mark Trumbo 3-4-5 combo should be one of the most potent, if not the most potent, in all of baseball.
The Angels also lobotomized the back end of their rotation, so it is now a weaker rotation than it was in 2012. The offense, however, should be enough to keep them ahead of the very competitive American League West pack.
Projected payroll: $144,149,250
Notable Players Out: RF Torii Hunter, DH Kendrys Morales, RHP Zack Greinke, RHP Dan Haren, RHP Ervin Santana, RHP Jordan Walden
Notable Players In: RF Josh Hamilton, LHP Jason Vargas, RHP Tommy Hanson, RHP Joe Blanton, RHP Ryan Madson
Prospect Watch: 3B Caleb Cowart and LHP Nick Maronde
Highlight Hitter: 1B Albert Pujols (ZiPS 2013 Projections: .285/.362/.516 37HR/88 R/94 RBI)
Highlight Pitcher: RHP Jered Weaver (ZiPS 2013 Projections: 16-9, 3.01 ERA, 7.8 K/9, 203 IP)
Projected Lineup: C Chris Ianetta, 1B Albert Pujols, 2B Howie Kendrick, 3B Alberto Callaspo, SS Erick Aybar, LF Mike Trout, CF Peter Bourjos, RF Josh Hamilton, DH Mark Trumbo
Projected Rotation: RHP Jered Weaver, LHP C.J. Wilson, RHP Tommy Hanson, LHP Jason Vargas, RHP Joe Blanton
Projected Closer: RHP Ernesto Frieri
Manager: Mike Scioscia
Projected 2013 Finish in AL West: 1. Anaheim Angels 2. Oakland Athletics 3. Texas Rangers 4. Seattle Mariners 5. Houston Astros
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