Question of the Day, 7/19 …
Is there any hope for the Angels to improve offensively at 3B, either by the Trade Deadline or after this season? They have way too many similar-style hitters (Erick Aybar, Alberto Callaspo and Howie Kendrick) and could use another power threat in the lineup. — Jim B.; Belleville, Ill.
I don’t disagree with you, Jim. I just don’t see many major upgrades becoming available, especially not before the non-waiver Trade Deadline. One name that continues to be floated around is Chase Headley, the Padres’ switch-hitting third baseman who isn’t eligible for free agency until after the 2014 season and is reportedly being shopped. Headley isn’t a sexy name, but he’s a good ballplayer (solid defensively and has compiled a .269/.348/.393 slash line since 2009). An upgrade over Callaspo? Sure. A big upgrade? Not really, and definitely not the traditional power-hitting third baseman you mentioned. Since he’s under club control for 2 1/2 more seasons, the Padres reportedly want a lot for him. And with the Angels focusing on pitching, they’re not likely to even get in the early stages in talks for Headley. Not much else seems to be available in the trade market (unless names like Placido Polanco and — gulp! — Chone Figgins sound good). As for this coming free-agent period? The big name (perhaps the only one) could be David Wright. But the Mets will do everything in their power to resign him.