Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim: Will Big Contracts Cost the Angels Mike Trout?December 14, 2012
There is a lot of euphoria in Anaheim these days after the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim brought in former MVP Josh Hamilton. There was much rejoicing last year when they brought in Albert Pujols. And great celebrations were had when homegrown ace Jered Weaver committed to a long-term deal.
But could this wild spending spree eventually cost the Angels their best player, Mike Trout?
Hall of Fame writer Peter Gammons pointed out on his Twitter feed that, in 2016, the Angels will have $90 million committed to Josh Hamilton, Albert Pujols, C. J. Wilson and Jered Weaver.
Hamilton will be 35, making $25 million. Pujols will be 36, making $25 million (with five years left on the deal.) Wilson will be 35, making $20 million. Weaver will be 33, making $20 million.
Does anyone else see the potential danger here? In this day and age, when mid-30s tends to be the age when players begin to collapse, the Angels will be committing a mid-size payroll to four players with health issues in the danger-zone age.
Take a long look at the post-2008 New York Mets and Chicago Cubs to see what a team with backloaded unmovable contracts look like on the field!
Meanwhile, Mike Trout will be 24 years old, entering his second year of arbitration eligibility and be two years removed from free agency.
If the Angels are not a championship-caliber team or aren't bringing in the big streams of revenue, would they be forced to be in a situation where they can not splurge on their best player?
Chances are that Arte Moreno will continue to spend his money, but 2016 could be many hundreds of millions of dollars later. And four seasons of this kind of spending could put a dent on anyone's financial situation.
Be careful with the long-term deals, Angels. Your best player is still waiting for his pay day.