In a surprising turn of events, just a few weeks after their trade deadline acquisitions, the Los Angeles Angels have placed many of the newly added players on waivers, leaving many fans and analysts puzzled. The moves made by Halos’ GM Perry Minasian, once celebrated, have raised eyebrows due to their inexplicable nature. This unexpected development has caught the attention of baseball enthusiasts and has ignited discussions about the motivations behind these actions.
The majority of the players who were placed on waivers have been swiftly claimed by other teams in the league. This raises questions about the Angels’ intentions behind the move. It becomes clear that the team’s motives were not solely geared towards bolstering their competitiveness on the field. Instead, it appears that financial considerations took precedence over the desire to improve their roster.
The decision to place these newly acquired players on waivers is believed to be primarily driven by financial reasons aligned with the franchise owner, Arte Moreno. Moreno’s decision-making seems to be centered around a reluctance to exceed the luxury tax threshold, even if it means sacrificing the potential benefits of having a stronger team. The move sends a message that the franchise values fiscal gains over maintaining competitive integrity.
The monetary aspect becomes more evident when considering the Angels’ history with luxury tax implications. Owner Arte Moreno has chosen to avoid going over the luxury tax limit at all costs. In this instance, the team opted to save approximately $5 million by placing these players on waivers. This financial maneuver, while appealing to the owner’s fiscal goals, has disappointed fans and players alike.
The ripple effect of this decision is palpable among the team’s supporters. Many dedicated fans, as well as players who have given their all to the Angels, feel disheartened by the move. The decision not only reflects a lack of commitment to on-field success but also undermines the trust between the team and its loyal fan base.
The Angels’ plan to cut payroll and avoid the luxury tax in this disappointing season appears to have worked.Five of the six veterans the Angels put on waivers were claimed, knocking more than $5 million off their 2023 payroll. Although the luxury tax calculations are not official until December, the Angels are now below the $233 million threshold, according to FanGraphs. If the Angels lose Shohei Ohtani as a free agent after making him a qualifying offer, they would receive a compensation pick after the second round if they are under the luxury tax threshold. It would have been after the fourth round if they were over the threshold.
The situation also raises concerns about the future of key players like Shohei Ohtani, Mike Trout, and Anthony Rendon, who are under contract with the team. The choice to prioritize financial gains over strengthening the roster could potentially impact the team’s overall performance and its ability to retain star players.
As the league watches this development unfold, the Angels’ decision to place trade deadline acquisitions on waivers continues to spark conversations and debates. While financial considerations might have driven this move, the broader implications for the team’s competitiveness and player morale remain subjects of speculation.