Los Angeles Angels: 5 Trade Packages for Dan Haren

Nathan TannerContributor IIIJune 10, 2011

Los Angeles Angels: 5 Trade Packages for Dan Haren

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    The Angels have some serious decisions to make regarding the future of Dan Haren and Jered Weaver.

    Will they be willing to pay the kind of money it will take to give both of them contract extensions? Or will they only offer an extension to one of them? If so, will they keep Haren or Weaver?

    As an Angels fan, I can only hope the two stars will wear Halos jerseys for years to come. The team’s offense is not what it used to be and the Angels need their arms to have a shot at the AL West.

    But if they decide to only re-sign one of the two, who will they choose?

    My guess is Weaver. Despite being a top pitcher, Haren is an MLB journeyman who has already played for four teams (Cardinals, Athletics, Diamondbacks, Angels). Weaver is younger, has strong Orange County ties and has been with the franchise since he was drafted in 2004.

    If the Angels make the decision to not extend Haren, here are five trade packages that would make sense.

5. Kyle Gibson, SP and Joe Benson, OF (Minnesota Twins)

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    The Minnesota Twins need to make a move. They have one of the worst pitching staffs in baseball and are ranked No. 27 in team ERA, WHIP and BAA.

    While the Twins are 11.5 games back in the AL Central, a trade for Haren would be the boost they need to get back in the division race.

    In return, the Angels would get Kyle Gibson and Joe Benson—top prospects who would help the Angels in the near future.

    Gibson is a 6’6” right-hander who is currently in Triple-A Rochester. He is known for having solid mechanics and great command. Through 12 starts Gibson is averaging 9.4 strikeouts per nine innings and has a 3.86 ERA.

    Benson, an outfielder in Double-A New Britain, has a great all-around game. He is a five-tool player who could make a big impact on the Angels as early as next season.

4. Jonathan Sanchez, SP (San Francisco Giants)

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    Jonathan Sanchez was a key reason the San Francisco Giants won the World Series last year.

    Sanchez has quality stuff and the Angels could use a left-handed starting pitcher. He makes a lot less money than Haren and still has room to improve.

    The Giants are built to win now and have the means to give Haren the contract extension he is seeking.

3. Jay Bruce, OF (Cincinnati Reds)

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    In the month of May, Jay Bruce batted .342 and hit 12 home runs. On the season he is hitting .299 and has 17 home runs.

    The Angels have a void in the middle of their lineup. The acquisition of Vernon Wells has been a bust and Torii Hunter is off to a subpar year.

    At age 24, Bruce has plenty of upside and can provide the Halos with a much-needed power hitter.

2. Adam Lind, 1B and Carlos Villanueva, RP (Toronto Blue Jays)

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    The Blue Jays are the third-highest scoring team in Major League Baseball, but their pitching staff is only ranked No. 20.

    If they want to have a shot at making the playoffs this year, they would be wise to seek Haren’s talents.

    The Angels are in need of a proven power hitter and the addition of Lind would allow Mark Trumbo to develop. Lind is hitting .317 and has 11 home runs this season.

    Carlos Villanueva would provide the Angels with another solid reliever. He has an ERA of 3.09, a WHIP of 0.99 and averages almost seven strikeouts per nine innings.

    This may be a lot to ask for, but I feel like the Blue Jays owe the Angels a favor after the Vernon Wells trade. I am still wondering how they convinced the Angels to take Wells and his massive contract off their hands.

1. Madison Bumgarner, SP and Pat Burrell, OF (San Francisco Giants)

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    The strength of the San Francisco Giants is their pitching. Wouldn’t they love to add another arm like Haren’s?

    At age 21, Madison Bumgarner is one of the top young pitchers in the league. His 2-7 record may not impress anyone, but it has more to do with run support than his ability to pitch. Bumgarner’s ERA stands at a solid 3.42.

    The Angels are short on outfielders and Pat Burrell would be a great fit. "Pat the Bat" is a veteran player who could help the young Halos.

    To get the deal done, the Angels could throw in Jeff Mathis. Doing so would not only help acquire Bumgarner and Burrell, but would allow Hank Conger to more fully develop behind the plate.

    With all of this said, I ultimately hope that team management ponies up the cash to keep Haren and all of the Angels stars. They may be a few games out of first, but the Angels still have what it takes to make an AL West run.