The Yankees entered this offseason with three primary needs: Re-sign their shortstop, re-sign their closer and add a starting pitcher. The free agent market wasn’t designed to give them many options, and when Yankees missed out on Cliff Lee, they were left without an obvious alternative. That’s especially true if Andy Pettitte moves ahead with retirement.
The Angels entered the offseason in a very different situation. Their rotation was fine, but they needed help in the outfield, the infield and the bullpen. They had room for a designated hitter as well, and this free agent market actually seemed to be a good fit for them.
But the Angels — much more so than the Yankees — have missed out time after time.
Carl Crawford would have fit in an outfield with Torii Hunter and Bobby Abreu, but the Red Sox won that bidding. Adrian Beltre could have solved the Angels issue at third base — Brandon Wood simply has not hit like they expected — but Beltre landed in Texas. So far, a three-year deal with Scott Downs has been the Angels most significant bullpen addition.
The Angels were a below-.500 team last season, but given the Mariners multiple problems, the Athletics weak lineup and the Rangers losses of Lee and Vladimir Guerrero, the Angels could have pushed themselves back to the top of the AL West. Instead, the Rangers improved an already good infield and the Athletics added a little bit of offense to go with their young rotation. It’s the Angels who are really scrambling, having done little to improve, despite plenty of opportunities to do so.
Associated Press photo of Beltre