The Angels trading for Vernon Wells and his contract was a serious case of Bad Ideas Jeans. But even worse is that they turned down something way better. Joel Sherman at the Post reports:
The way I hear it the Mets and Angels did actually discuss Beltran. But the Angels ultimately saw Wells as the better choice despite the much larger financial investment. The Angels liked that there were no doubts about Wells’ health as compared to Beltran, whose knees are a serious wonder. And despite the sense that Wells’ defensive game has regressed some, the Angels believed that he was definitely capable of playing center field. They did not believe that about Beltran.
(1) The Angels have a potential gold glove center fielder already and if he doesn’t hit enough to stick, they still have Torii Hunter who can pass in center, I’m sure;
(2) If Carlos Beltran doesn’t out-produce Vernon Wells this year I’ll eat my hat. There. I said it.
I don’t think the Angels understand that players are not just players. They are contracts and assets too, and unless the budget is unlimited — and the Angels are limited — a bad contract like Wells’ hurts the team.