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Calhoun Considerations: Three Moving Parts


Angelsjunky

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As always seems to be the case, the Angels approach the new season with a variety of question marks, each with many possible answers. One such case is our favorite ginger, Kole Calhoun. As you all know, he was absolutely atrocious for the first couple months, then after a few weeks in the minors, came back and absolutely raked before cooling off for the last month or so. The big question is: Which version of Kole will show up in 2019? And is whatever was wrong during the beginning of the year fixed, with the end of the year being more exhaustion and his usual streakiness?

Add in the fact that Kole is 31, will be paid $10.5M in 2019 with a team option of $14M for 2020, with a $1M buyout.

All of this is exacerbated by the fact that the Angels have their best prospect since Mike Trout not far from the majors: Jo Adell. 

So with Kole, we have three moving parts: `1) His performance, 2) Adell's performance and major league readiness, and 3) the team's performance.

To make sense of the many possibilities, I made two charts: one for if the Angels are in contention in July, the other for if they're not. This is how I see the "Kole Possibilities:"

image.png.bb23306b3ed8746e0c9e4243bba73d09.png

image.png.43fb4063643644e3968164697d6f68cc.png

What say you? Does that all seem accurate?

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Makes perfect sense to me. I think Adell will be ready to go come 2020 no matter what. Obviously a September callup if he shows flashes of brilliance. If he does extremely well in spring training we might even have a possibility of him starting in AAA. I do think he’ll start in AA and be a quick AAA callup. I hope Calhoun plays well so he can be traded to a contending team and we add arm depth to our system like a Sandoval or Buttrey. Adell hits .250-.270 while called up, ready full time come 2020.

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My take is that odds are Calhoun gets traded at/before deadline time this season.

It would take Calhoun having a career year to perhaps change those odds (but that could actually increase those odds and give Halos some real leverage to acquire some young prospects). 

I agree with analysis if Halos are in contention (I really don't see that to be the case in 2019), odds are Halos might not want to mess with the line up down the stretch,

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3 hours ago, AngelsLakersFan said:

I think this is pretty accurate, except I disagree that Kole's downside is <1 war... as we saw last year he was on a record setting pace for negative war in the first half.

<1 WAR means "below 1 WAR" - which could mean anything from 0.9 to negative whatever...

And yeah, he was really, really bad at the start of last year. But if he starts that way again, how long do you expect the Angels to play him? Probably worst-case scenario is that he's horrible for the first 30-40 games, gets demoted in favor of Hermosillo/Walsh/Bourjos/etc, comes up again a few weeks later and if he sucks for a couple weeks is benched or DLed. I suppose he could put together a -1.5 WAR in 50 games, but I don't think the Angels would let him continue that kind of pace all year.

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17 hours ago, Angelsjunky said:

<1 WAR means "below 1 WAR" - which could mean anything from 0.9 to negative whatever...

And yeah, he was really, really bad at the start of last year. But if he starts that way again, how long do you expect the Angels to play him? Probably worst-case scenario is that he's horrible for the first 30-40 games, gets demoted in favor of Hermosillo/Walsh/Bourjos/etc, comes up again a few weeks later and if he sucks for a couple weeks is benched or DLed. I suppose he could put together a -1.5 WAR in 50 games, but I don't think the Angels would let him continue that kind of pace all year.

I think he got all the way down to -2.5 last year, so I just thought the difference is significant. If he's at 0.8 war by the all star break their approach will be fundamentally different than if he's at the -1 war area. 

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I think you've simplified the situation nicely.

The issue I have is that there are other outcomes.

Say Kole is doing well, on pace for a 3 WAR season, but Adell is absolutely killing it in AAA, AND Bour is struggling, Ohtani isn't playing at DH every day.

Then Kole would move to 1B likely, to open a spot for Adell. 

Too many likely different outcomes to do a simple chart.

 

 

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