We’ve published over 50 posts containing mentions of new Angels first baseman Albert Pujols since the Winter Meetings kicked off on Sunday night.
Today, of course, it all came to a head.
In case you missed any of the analysis from our team of writers, here’s a recap of the subjects we’ve broached over the past 12 hours or so relevant to Pujols and his agreement with Anaheim:
And if you want to read a fascinating recap of how the Pujols negotiations went down from start to finish, check out this piece by Bob Nightengale of USA Today. He has the full scoop from agent Dan Lozano.
- The initial deal announcement hits the site. 10 years, $254 million, and a full no-trade clause.
- Craig argues that we shouldn’t resent Pujols for chasing big money in Anaheim. The Cardinals had a chance, and their offer simply didn’t compete.
- A St. Louis Post-Dispatch headline reads “PUJOLS TURNS HIS BACK ON ST. LOUIS”
- Craig sees the contract as a potential albatross down the road for the Angels.
- Gleeman reviews how some of the best hitters in baseball history have fared after age 32.
- Around noon, it is reported that the Marlins’ 10-year offer to Pujols was worth $275 million.
- Pouliot wonders what other moves the Halos will make this winter, beyond Pujols and C.J. Wilson.
- How will Pujols deal with the switch from the National League to the American League and how will he fare in Angel Stadium? Pouliot attempts answers.
- For comparison’s sake, Gleeman examines the largest contracts signed last offseason.
- Based off FanGraphs’ projected dollar values, Pujols’ 11 years in St. Louis were a steal for the Cards.
- With so many star first basemen now in the American League, expect major All-Star snubs in 2012.
- Pouliot gives a few suggestions on what the Angels’ lineup might look like next year.
- MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch says Lozano tried to shop Pujols to the Yankees at one point.
- According to the Post-Dispatch, retail stores in the St. Louis area were giving away their remaining stock of Pujols jerseys and jersey shirts after the announcement.
It’s rare for one player to dominate the news stories on HBT. But nothing about Thursday was common.
It was only a matter of time before Mike Trout courted another all-time record, and on Saturday, he found himself in elite company with his 25th and 26th home runs of the season. He put the Angels on the board with a 429-foot blast in the first inning, depositing an 0-1 fastball from the Orioles’ Kevin Gausman into the left field bleachers:
In the third inning, with the Angels up 2-1, Trout returned to tack on another insurance run. He targeted Gausman’s slider for his second solo shot of the evening and cleared the center field fence with a 418-footer to bring his total to 26 home runs on the year.
Trout has mashed at a staggering .339/.471/.596 clip since his return from the disabled list last month, and Saturday’s totals helped mark his sixth consecutive season with at least 25 home runs. That’s a record few have matched before their age-26 season; in fact, only Hall of Fame sluggers Eddie Mathews and Frank Robinson have ever pulled it off.
Assuming he continues to rake in hits and plate appearances over the last six weeks of the regular season — and there’s nothing to indicate that he won’t — Trout is in line to join elite company of a different kind. The 26-year-old entered Saturday’s game with a 206 OPS+ (park-adjusted on-base plus slugging). According to MLB.com’s Matt Kelly, that means Trout’s hitting at a better clip than the average Major League player by a full 106 percent. Should he finish the year with a 200 OPS+ and 502 plate appearances or better, he’ll be the first player to do so since Barry Bonds obliterated the competition with his 263 OPS+ in 2004.
The Blue Jays acquired right-hander Tom Koehler from the Marlins in exchange for minor league right-hander Osman Gutierrez and cash considerations, the clubs announced Saturday. Koehler is in his sixth year with the Marlins and stands to make $5.75 million in 2017. He’ll be arbitration eligible in 2018 and is set to enter free agency by 2019.
The 31-year-old right-hander struggled to a 7.92 ERA, 4.7 BB/9 and 7.1 SO/9 over 55 2/3 innings with Miami in 2017. He was optioned to Triple-A New Orleans in late July, where he rebounded with a 1-1 record in seven starts and whittled his ERA down to a 1.67 mark. The Blue Jays have yet to establish Koehler’s role within their organization, but are hoping to see a turnaround from the righty when he breaks back into the big leagues.
Gutierrez, 22, was assigned to Single-A Greensboro on Saturday. He has yet to find his footing in the minors, and exited a 78-inning stint with Single-A Lansing after racking up a career-worst 7.85 ERA and 8.2 SO/9. His lack of control is particularly alarming, with a 6.2 BB/9 that dwarfs the 2.0+ BB/9 of seasons past, but he still has plenty of time to figure out his mechanics before reaching the Show.