The Angels’ offseason is stirring with speculation as they contemplate the possibility of moving Anthony Rendon. The question looming over baseball fans is, could the Angels pull off this high-stakes trade, despite the herculean effort it would require?
Teams on the lookout for a seasoned player like Anthony Rendon are those with a “win now” mentality or those just a piece or two away from becoming true contenders. A prime example is the Arizona Diamondbacks, who will see third baseman Evan Longoria become a free agent this year, potentially making room for a veteran in their young, emerging core. Similarly, the Toronto Blue Jays, packed with young stars, are faced with the prospect of their third baseman hitting free agency.
Before delving into the complexities of an Anthony Rendon trade, let’s scrutinize his performance on the field. Any team interested in acquiring the 33-year-old third baseman would be betting on the player he was four years ago, not the one with a .701 OPS over the past three years. In those remarkable four years, Rendon led the league in doubles twice, secured an RBI title, and boasted an impressive OPS of .949. He also consistently played in 147, 136, 146, and 52 games each season, with the latter being due to the shortened 2020 season.
Anthony Rendon currently has three years and $105 million left on his contract. For the Angels to make a trade happen, it’s highly likely that they would need to contribute significantly to Rendon’s salary. If the Angels agree to cover 65% of his remaining salary, the acquiring team would be paying an average of $12.25 million per year—a sum just shy of the amount the Blue Jays pay for Matt Chapman. In essence, the more salary the Angels take on, the more appealing the prospect, if any, they can expect in return.
In sum, the Angels’ ability to orchestrate a trade involving Rendon this offseason hinges entirely on their decisions. Not long ago, Rendon was regarded as the premier third baseman in the game. With the right trade partner and a willingness to shoulder part of his salary, the prospect of Rendon no longer calling Anaheim home becomes a possibility worth considering.