L.A. Angels Make CC Sabathia No. 1 Priority?

Roman BalunContributor IDecember 1, 2008

The Angels announced last week that they will become players in the CC Sabathia sweepstakes.

With a rotation already loaded with talent, acquiring Sabathia would make the Halo rotation the best in baseball, hands down. Sabathia would be joining former 19-game winner, and staff ace, John Lackey, 2008 All-Stars Ervin Santana and Joe Saunders, and young Jered Weaver, who won his first 11 Major League decisions just two years ago in a phenomenal rookie campaign.

Owner Arte Moreno and now sophomore General Manager Tony Reagins have a history, however short it may be, for playing their hand close to their chest.

Just last offseason, the Angels made a play for Gold Glove center fielder Torii Hunter that nobody in baseball saw coming. Talk of extending an offer to Sabathia could just be a ploy to make the New York Yankees over-pay for his services and take them out of the running for first baseman Mark Teixeira.

The Yankees also recently traded for Nick Swisher, an all around solid player who can play the outfield as well as first base. Trading for a first baseman suggests that the Yankees put all of their eggs into one basket and have their hearts set on Sabathia rather than Teixeira.

Although the Yankees do have the deepest pockets in the baseball world, Sabathia is a Southern California native and has voiced his interest to pitch on the West Coast. It is a win-win situation for the Halo's.

Make the Pinstripers spend more money than they have to, or land the former Cy Young Award winner. The offer out of New York stands at $140 million over six years, which the Angels could easily match, causing the Yankees to up their offer to $160 million.

Even though the Angels are indeed in on the Sabathia race, make no mistake about it, Mark Teixeira is still the No. 1 priority. Teixeira's agent, Scott Boras has made it known that his client is seeking a 10-year deal, but Angels officials are hesitant to go above eight.

With a surplus of pitching, and a lack of power, the Halos must find a way to reel in Teixeira, or history will be repeating itself in the form of early playoff exits for the next several years.