Angels’ Playoff Hopes Dashed: Players Placed on Waivers After Disappointing Trades

Lucas Giolito and Others Hit Waivers as Angels' Season Takes a Gloomy Turn

The Angels’ aspirations for the current season and playoffs have come to an abrupt end as a cluster of players found themselves on waivers this past Tuesday. Leading this group is pitcher Lucas Giolito, who was acquired by the club in a trade just under a month ago, during this year’s trade deadline frenzy. The Angels had embarked on an ambitious endeavor by acquiring not only Giolito but also Reynaldo López, Randal Grichuk, and several others. Their aim was to bolster their chances of securing a spot in the playoffs and to demonstrate to Shohei Ohtani the team’s potential to be a formidable force in the world of playoff baseball. Regrettably, only a few weeks later, Ohtani suffered an elbow injury, prompting the termination of his season as a pitcher.

The decisive move by Arte Moreno effectively concludes the Angels’ 2023 season. This maneuver involves trading away some of the team’s promising future prospects and concurrently relinquishing the talent for which they had traded. In their pursuit of Giolito’s talents, the Angels had traded away their second and third best prospects, with the expectation of a productive partnership. Regrettably, Giolito’s tenure with the team lasted a mere month.

After delivering an impressive 3.79 ERA performance with the Chicago White Sox earlier in the year, the Angels anticipated a substantial starting arm to enhance their winning potential alongside Ohtani and the rest of the rotation. However, Giolito’s performance took a nosedive in Southern California. Across six starts, Giolito struggled with a disappointing 6.89 ERA over 32.2 innings pitched. His struggles extended further, with 15 walks and only 34 strikeouts to his name. This disappointing performance translated to a negative 0.5 WAR for the Angels, culminating in a 1-5 record.

This development today reveals that the Angels currently share the MLB’s lowest record, with a discouraging 7-17 performance since the trade deadline. Consequently, the Angels stand at 63-69, a considerable distance away from the Wild Card contention, lagging behind by a staggering 11.5 games.

The decision to place these players on waivers stems from the need to offload salaries. Teams that claim these players will be responsible for paying their salaries for the remainder of the season. This strategic move aims to save funds for a potentially impactful offseason, where the Angels plan to make Shohei Ohtani the highest-paid player in MLB history. Nevertheless, the Angels will not receive any players in exchange, potentially jeopardizing their ability to retain Ohtani due to the significant roster overhaul. It is anticipated that playoff-bound teams will eagerly snap up these players to fortify their lineup for the upcoming October games, highlighting the financial aspect’s long-term benefits. However, for both the Angels and their devoted fans, the curtain has officially fallen on the 2023 season.

Gary Lee

Gary Lee, a mainstay at LA Sports Report, is not just a sports writer; he's a veritable institution in the realm of sports journalism. With an extensive and illustrious career that boasts stints with notable platforms like Sports Illustrated, Gary has consistently showcased an uncanny knack for capturing the essence of the game, regardless of the sport. His prowess isn't limited to the written word alone; Gary's vast experience extends to creating and curating sports websites, providing fans with in-depth analysis, up-to-date news, and captivating stories. For readers keen on insights into the Clippers, Dodgers, Galaxy, Kings, LAFC, Lakers, Rams, UCLA, and USC, Gary is your go-to guy.
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