Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Angels are expected to pursue pitching during the off-season by making second baseman Howie Kendrick or third baseman David Freese available in a trade. The Angels will be looking for both starting and relief pitching.
Kendrick is entering the final year of a four-year, $33.5 million contract extension signed in January 2012. Freese will be entering his third and final year of arbitration eligibility, having earned just over $5 million this past season.
As Rosenthal notes, the Angels would have an easier time replacing Kendrick, as Grant Green or Gordon Beckham could fill the void, with Alex Yarbrough not far behind. The Angels lack depth at third base; losing Freese would likely mean using Beckham full-time at the hot corner, something he hasn’t done since 2009 with the White Sox.
ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Rockies and shortstop Trevor Story have come to terms on a two-year, $27.5 million deal, buying out his two remaining years of arbitration eligibility.
Story, 27, and the Rockies did not agree on a salary before the deadline earlier this month. Story filed for $11.5 million while the team countered at $10.75 million. The average annual value of this deal — $13.75 million — puts him a little bit ahead this year and likely a little bit behind next year.
This past season in Colorado, Story hit .294/.363/.554 with 35 home runs, 85 RBI, 111 runs scored, and 23 stolen bases over 656 trips to the plate. He also continued to rank among the game’s best defensive shortstops. Per FanGraphs, Story’s 10.9 Wins Above Replacement over the last two seasons is fifth-best among shortstops (min. 1,000 PA) behind Alex Bregman, Francisco Lindor, Xander Bogaerts, and Marcus Semien.
With third baseman Nolan Arenado likely on his way out via trade, one wonders if the same fate awaits Story at some point over the next two seasons.