L.A. Angels: Grading the Angels' Deadline Deals (or Non-Deals)

Nadia MishkinContributor IIIAugust 22, 2011

Chances of a postseason run seemed a legitimate possibility for the Los Angeles Angels heading towards the trade deadline. They were just two games behind Texas in the AL West and five games behind the Yankees in the Wild Card standings.

The Angels pitching staff is lead by ace Jered Weaver, who has the best ERA in the American League and the third-most wins. Rookie first basemen Mark Trumbo has led the offense with some power, hitting 23 home runs.

Meanwhile, the rest of the team has struggled to consistently produce runs. They could also use some pitching help. 

So far, the Angels have gone 9-9 in August. However, they lost series to both the Rangers and the Yankees, dropping to five games out of their division and nine games out of the Wild Card.

In a four-game series against their division rivals, the Angels sent rookies to the mound in the first two games—they combined to give up a total of six runs in less than three innings.

Not only is the starting staff lacking solidity, but the bullpen leads the majors with 21 losses and eight blown saves. Their lineup does not have anyone hitting above .290.

Los Angeles was believed to be a buyer at the deadline but came up empty. Meanwhile, the Rangers acquired Mike Adams and Koji Uehara, two relief pitchers that filled their greatest voids.

The Angels could have used some bullpen support themselves as well as a big bat to bolster the offense. They could have upgraded at third base and catcher, perhaps targeting third basemen Michael Cuddyer and Aramis Ramirez or catcher Ramon Hernandez to add some pop to the lineup. 

The inaction at the deadline can be attributed to the unwillingness of the Angels' general manager to part with desirable players, such as rookies Garrett Richards and Mike Trout. 

So as Texas bulked up to defend their American League title, Los Angeles did not capitalize on the opportunity to make a run at the postseason. While they are still in the race, the Halos have already dropped in the standings.

With 40 games left in the regular season, they will have to work with the pieces they have. If they are going to have a shot at winning the division, Los Angeles has to finish very strong.