Halladay, Angels could be a dream fit

The word is out that the Blue Jays are listening to proposals for Roy Halladay, who has few peers among starting pitchers. No team values starters more highly than the Angels. They have made inquiries, knowing how much Halladay’s talent and endurance would mean in a rotation that has been patched together all season as a result of injuries and tragedy in the form of the death of Nick Adenhart.

The obvious question is this: How high can, or would, they go to import a dominant starter at the top of his game, signed through next season? He’s making $14.25 million this season, $15.75 next year.

The Blue Jays reportedly would want a quality shortstop — the Angels are loaded there — and young pitching talent in exchange for a man who gives you seven to nine innings of high-level work every fifth day.

Probably the only commodity the Angels value as highly as starting pitching is young talent, and therein lines the rub.

Staying healthy for the first time, Erick Aybar has established himself this season as one of the premier young shortstops in the game. He could be featured in an attractive package. If the Blue Jays prefer power, Brandon Wood is one of the elite young mashers in the game, just waiting for his opportunity in Triple-A Salt Lake to show he’s the real deal.

The Angels are rich in young talent. They have youthful pitching (Sean O’Sullivan, Jordan Walden, Trevor Reckling, among others) that would have to appeal to Toronto. It’s conceivable but unlikely they would consider moving one of their established starters — Ervin Santana or Joe Saunders, most likely — in a Halladay deal.

The Jays are in a position of strength and don’t have to do anything. But they’re in a top-heavy division, chasing the Yankees, Red Sox and Rays in the AL East, and as great as Halladay is, it’s highly doubtful Toronto can put together a surge to catch them.

The Phillies are seen as the leading candidates to land Halladay, if he is moved. They have the youthful talent to get it done and clearly are in need of a front-line starter. The level of the Angels’ need is not as high as Philadelphia’s, but as they showed last July with Mark Teixeira, they’re not averse to making the big, bold move.

The Angels have a lot of decisions to make this winter, with Vladimir Guerrero, John Lackey, Chone Figgins, Bobby Abreu, Kelvim Escobar, Robb Quinlan and Darren Oliver all eligible for free agency. Taking on Halladay’s contract would be no issue with so much payroll potentially coming off the books.

When the Padres’ Jake Peavy was available over the winter, the Angels gave it serious consideration but never made a big pitch. There were concerns about how his shoulder and elbow would hold up over the long haul. With Halladay, who has been as durable as they come with superior mechanics, that is not an issue.

This is about as tempting as it gets. For Halladay, who has made it clear he wants to pitch for a winner if he leaves Toronto, the interest would have to be mutual. The Angels offer pretty much everything a player can want. Just ask Torii Hunter. He’ll talk all day about that.  



  1. thompsma@sce.com

    It appears the Blue Jays biggest needs are at SS, C and the corner infield positions (long term). The Angels do match up very well, have the salary coming off the books in 2010 – Perhaps the Halos could have the Blue Jays include Alex Rios in the deal to fill the gaping hole in RF that will exist next year if Abreu and Vladdy are not resigned. It appears to me the Jays’ biggest holes are at C, SS and the corner infield (long term). Toronto would, undoubtedly, want Jordan Walden to go along with Ricky Romero, Brett Cecil and the other arms they have coming.

  2. 48angels48

    here is my proposed trade

    Reckling/Walden/S.Rodriguez or Wood ( not statia )/ and Conger or Bobby Wilson

  3. snow36

    I am not too familar with the Angels’ farm teams, but if they could deal for Halladay then they should definitely make the attempt. It would add an ace to an already deep staff, while not hurting the prospect pool too severely

  4. halothunder

    The dilemma for the Halos as would be anybody is the compensatory cost with a front-line starter the Blue Jays (Riccardi) could have under control from some years or bona-fide quality, potentially dominating, hurler brought up (or a prospect) like Jordan Zimmerman, Tommy Hanson, Rick Porcello, or David Price. With that in mind the Halos don’t have a glaring prospect so they’d pluck one off the current starting rotation.

    As I pointed out of my December 2008 blog, http://halothunder.mlblogs.com/archives/2008/12/halos_happy_halladays.html, Jared Weaver’s an even more intriguing strategical piece by his turn-out year that they wouldn’t have to give up as much after him.

    The Halos aren’t calling up Brandon Wood and holding him aside as a trade piece, http://halothunder.mlblogs.com/archives/2009/06/as_the_wood_whithers_in_the_ha.html., so they’re building on an opportunity here toward landing Halliday: Jared Weaver, Brandon Wood, and ???

  5. j_rod

    Who’s the guy above suggesting trading weaver?? Do you even watch the games? Weave has been very good this year. Yes, he was off last year, however it was only his 2nd year as a big leaguer, so it is expected. Do you remember that was the same with Santana? That was the year he was sent back down to work it out. Our problem is definitely the bullpen, even though we have been somewhat better as of late. However, adding a starter like Halladay definitely doesn’t hurt. Especially with Santana not being the same this year due to injuries. But they will want the farm since he is signed through next season. I really don’t see it happening. I don’t think we would want to possibly have to give up Wood, O’sullivan or Palmer or both. If we do, we need some bullpen help also.

  6. oakin07

    Erick Aybar’s wOBA is .312 this year. His total UZR/150 over the last few years is 3.2.

    Premiere young shortstop? Get real.

  7. oakin07

    It’d Jered Weaver. Seriously halothunder, whatever that even means, you don’t even know how to spell the dude’s name?

    Okay and to the poster of this blog, Erick Aybar is not one of the premiere young shortstops in the game. He is average for a young shortstop. He’s nowhere near the level of Jose, Hanley, Yunel or even a Mike Aviles. And please, please, please don’t even compare Ervin Santana to Joe Saunders.

    And really, j-rod, Palmer? Really? 30 year old rookie with a 4.86 ERA who has actually gotten lucky this year with a .277 BABIP and a 68% strand rate? Honestly, if the Angels offered him as part of a package, Ricciardi would laugh hysterically.

    Now, I am an A’s fan, but I’m also a baseball fan. Aybar, Saunders and Palmer are bums, sorry. Ervin Santana is a stud, that Walden kid looks like he could be a stud, but the Blue Jays would never, ever accept a package based around Aybar and Saunders.

  8. mynameztwitch

    A part of me thinks that the Angels may have been keeping Brandon Wood in the minors until after the trade deadline strictly to see if they could use him as a big bargaining pin. It is clear to see that his minor league numbers are very promising while his big league experience hasn’t been as convincing.

    I believe that if the Angels make a move for a guy like Halladay they will also be looking for another player as well whether it be another pitcher or a bat such as Wells or Rios to go along with him. Of course this could cause an even greater OF log jam. I could see the Angels more likely trying to pry a piece such as aaron hill or marco scutaro in order to replace Howie Kendrick or Erick Aybar should they be included in a trade that also included Wood or Rodriguez.

    In order for the Angels to hook Halladay they will most likely be forced to include Weaver in it. There is no way Toronto would give up a great starter and leave a hole in their rotation especially since they are still in contention. But Angel fans shouldn’t fret because assuming we don’t trade him, the name Trevor Reckling will be heard and known by Angel Fans very soon……plus WE GET ROY HALLADAY!! I’d much rather have Halladay than Weaver.

  9. luvvhalos

    i really, really hope they don’t get halladay, of course i would love to see a sub-2 era and 20 wins but i would rather have depth in the infield, pitching,and the outfield and there is no way i would include weave in a deal i would offer santana, or saund-o, eybar, kendrick, and gary matthews jr. and it probabl wouldn’t work out with these players but these are the only guys i wouldn’t be mad that the halos gave up

  10. luvvhalos

    i really, really hope they don’t get halladay, of course i would love to see a sub-2 era and 20 wins but i would rather have depth in the infield, pitching,and the outfield and there is no way i would include weave in a deal i would offer santana, or saund-o, eybar, kendrick, and gary matthews jr. and it probabl wouldn’t work out with these players but these are the only guys i wouldn’t be mad that the halos gave up

  11. j_rod

    The Angels do not need Halladay. Laugh and walk away at the Jays if they ask for the world for Halladay. Let’s put this season in perspective. The Halo’s are 3.5 games ahead in the west despite all of the injuries. The hitting has been awesome this year. We are a piece or 2 away from making a serious run in the playoffs. And those pieces do not include Halladay or a big bat. It is relief pitching and/or another 2nd tier, less costly starting pitcher alternative. Perhaps Greinke from the Royals or someone of similar caliber. In this market, there is no reason to give up the farm for a guy you’ll have for a year and a half.

  12. tarryhawk

    Halladay would be a great pick-up, but I think he will cost too much. Cliff Lee would be a more likely and cheaper choice… You’d be looking at a package like Saunders, Wood, Willits and another young arm maybe Anthony Ortega (O’Sullivan or Waldin) to land Halladay… it depends on what the Angels plans are moving forward… and whoever that person was to ask for Alex Rios is an idiot… no OF options after next year? Rivera will move to right, and either Matthews or Willits will be in left IF Abreau is not resigned. My thought is he will be and Vladdy will be gone.

  13. j_rod

    No offense, but the Angels do Not need Halladay to contend for a championship. They have proven that they can beat the Yanks. They have proven that they can beat Minnesota in the central. I think they would handle Detroit as well. The big hurdle would of course be the Red Sox. But given that the AL East is crowded, I’m calling it here; The Red Sox will miss the playoffs this year as the Yanks take it. It will be the Yanks, Detroit, Angels, and Texas as the Wild Card.

    The starting pitching staff is just going through a rough patch, just like hitters do. At the start of the season, the starting pitching was excellent. It’s cooled off, but that is fine because it will heat back up in time for late in the season and into the playoffs.

    Don’t give up the farm for Halladay.

    Go Angels!

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