A new item to InsideTheHalos.com, we are giving you a notebook month-to-month, all the way through the off-season and into Spring Training. Looking at the Angels' daily items in simple terms, this notebook should keep you updated on everything the Angels do through the months without baseball.
We'll start you off with the beginning of the postseason, and carry this notebook through November.
- Angels claim middle-infielder, Nolan Fontana, from Houston
Fontana, 25, adds infield depth to the organization. In five Minor League seasons, Fontana has hit .237 with a .379 on-base percentage and .726 OPS. Known for his disciplined approach, Fontana has walked in 17.69% of his plate appearances. In a short scouting report, a scout noted that Fontana has a plus approach, good arm and range, and a sub-average bat.
- Juan Graterol designated for assignment
Graterol, 27, appeared in nine games for the Angels, going 4-for-14 with two doubles.
- Angels select the contracts of RHP's Austin Adams, Keynan Middleton, Eduardo Paredes and LHP Nate Smith
- On the final day to protect players from the Rule-5 Draft, the Angels selected four prospects to their 40-man roster. Smith, 24, is known as the top pitching prospect in the farm system, primarily for the command of his low 90's fastball and above-average off-speed pitches. Adams, 25, has arguably the best slider in the system and a high 90's fastball but has dealt with control problems in his career. Middleton, 23, was turned into a reliever this last season, which saw his fastball jump to the high 90's regularly, touching 102 MPH. Paredes, 21, is a blossoming prospect with a mid 90's fastball and above-average cutter/slider.
- Angels designate Abel De Los Santos, Blake Parker and Jose Valdez for assignment; Rey Navarro outrighted to Triple-A Salt Lake
- De Los Santos, 24, and Parker, 31, were both postseason waiver claims. Valdez, 26, pitched in 25 games for the Angels in 2016, posting a 4.24 ERA. Navarro, 26, had an injury-ridden season in 2016, having a .578 OPS in 175 plate appearances with Salt Lake.
- Mike Trout wins American League MVP
- Angels sign minor-league catcher, Francisco Arcia
Another former Yankees minor leaguer, the 27-year-old catcher has a .243/.319/.340 slash line in 10 minor-league seasons,
- Angels release minor league first baseman, Eric Aguilera
Primarily known for his offensive abilities, Aguilera hit .294 with an ,.815 OPS over his four-year minor-league career, with 55 home runs and 285 RBI. The 26-year-old and 34th round pick from 2013 nearly became the sixth player to win the organizational Triple Crown in 2015, hitting .313 with 17 home runs and 94 RBI.
- Angels sign outfielder, Ramon Flores, to minor-league deal
A former top prospect from Eppler's days with the Yankees, the 24-year-old outfielder has struggled to hit for average in his short 116-game stint at the Major League level. Known primarily for his plate discipline, Flores held a .363 on-base percentage in his eight-year minor-league career. It's likely he'll fight for a bench spot during Spring Training as a fourth outfielder due to his discipline, ability to play the field, and above-average speed.
- Angels sign right-handed reliever, Ivan Hernandez, to minor-league deal
Used primary as a reliever, Hernandez is a fastball heavy pitcher who works in the mid 90's, touching 97, with a below-average slider. Over six years and 221.1 innings in the minors, the 25-year-old has a 4.39 ERA and has not pitched above High-A.\
- Angels sign right-handed pitcher, Osmer Morales, to a minor-league deal
The 24-year-old Venezuelan has performed well during his seven-year career in the minors, possessing a 2.96 ERA. Over his time stateside, Morales has a 3.36 ERA, being used a swingman.
- Angels sign Jesse Chavez to one-year, $5.75 million deal
- Angels sign minor-league pitcher, Luis Diaz
Diaz, 24, has pitched eight years in the minors. The starting right-handed pitcher has a 4.04 ERA in 148 games and has pitched as high as the Double-A level.
- Angels sign minor-league outfielder/first baseman, Luis Tejada
The 24-year-old has a .691 OPS over his seven years in the minors, with 65 stolen bases.
- Mike Trout wins fifth consecutive Silver Slugger Award
For the fifth year in a row, Trout has won the Silver Slugger Award for American League outfielders. Voted on by coaches and managers, the award is given to a player in each position of each league. Trout becomes the youngest player to win the award five times, and is the second player (Mike Piazza) to win the award five times in his first full-time five years in the Major Leagues. Trout now has possession of the club record with five awards, passing Vladimir Guerrero, who won four consecutive years from 2004-2007. He becomes the first player since Alex Rodriguez in 1998-2003 to win five straight Silver Slugger awards. *notes from Angels PR*
- Angels re-sign Andrew Bailey to one-year, $1 million deal
- The former Rookie of the Year and closer for the Oakland Athletics was in the midst of a career falling apart. The fourth team in six years had given up on the reliever, and the Angels took a shot in the dark. That shot turned into three runs in 11.1 innings, and another opportunity to pitch at the Major League level again. The 32-year-old will compete for a back end spot of the bullpen. To make room on the 40-man roster, the Angels designated outfielder, Shane Robinson, for assignment.
- J.C. Ramirez will be tested as a starter in Spring Training
- At the General Manager meetings, Billy Eppler told the OC Register and Los Angeles Times that reliever, J.C. Ramirez, will be tried as a starter in Spring Training. A successful waiver claim in June, the 28-year-old Nicaraguan held a 2.91 ERA in 46.1 innings with the Angels, all in relief. Ramirez acted as a starter for the first six years of his Minor League career, but has gone over the 50 innings pitched mark only twice since 2011, the last year he was used as a starter.
- 21 players from the Angels farm system elect free agency
A common thread on the day free agency starts is that players who signed with the team on a one-year minor league deal are not immediately re-signed and elect free agency. Here is a full list of players from the Angels farm system to elect free agency; IF Angelo Amendolare, RHP Geoff Broussard, 2B Sean Coyle, OF Austin Cousino, RHP Nate Fury, OF Jabari Henry, RHP D.J. Johnson, LHP Chris Jones, RHP Kyle Kendrick, RHP Yunesky Maya, LHP Jose Molina, RHP Zach Nuding, LHP Brett Oberholtzer, LHP Edward Paredes, SS Anthony Phillips, RHP Jhonny Polanco, C Webster Rivas, RHP Josh Roenicke, RHP Eury Sanchez, C Ryan Scott, RHP David Trexler
- Angels exercise $7 million option on Yunel Escobar
- The primary leadoff man from 2016 will retake his place at the top of the lineup in 2017. The Angels exercised the 2017 option for the 34-year-old third-baseman, who hit .304 with a .355 on-base percentage and .745 OPS.
- Mike Trout named top three finalist for American League Most Valuable Player
- Not shocking, Trout was named a top three finalist for the AL MVP for the fifth consecutive year. Joining him are Red Sox outfielder, Mookie Betts, and Astros second baseman, Jose Altuve. Trout leads the trio in on-base percentage (.441), slugging-percentage (.550), OPS (.991), and fWAR (9.4). Trout has finished in the top two of voting in each of the last four years, winning the award in 2014. The award will be announced November 17.
- Cory Rasmus designated for assignment
- The Angels reinstated Matt Shoemaker, Huston Street, Nick Tropeano, Andrew Heaney and Garrett Richards from the 60-Day DL... oh my, what a season full of injuries. To make room for all five, the team made room by designating the 29-year-old swingman, Rasmus. In back-to-back years of injuries, Rasmus had a 5.56 ERA since 2015. Many wonder if a healthy Rasmus could get back to his 2014 season, where he was a large part in the late season run for the Division Title, making spot starts, and holding a 2.57 ERA in 56 innings.
- Angels promote Nate Horowitz to Director of Pro Scouting
- Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reported that the former Assistant Director of Amateur Scouting has been promoted to Director of Pro Scouting. The position was made available when Hal Morris resigned from the position, leaving to work for Fantex, a financial-services and brand building company for athletes.
- Angels see free-agent pitcher, Greg Holland, at his showcase in Florida
- Jeff Fletcher of the OC Register reported that the Angels had a scout present at Greg Holland's showcase in Florida. The former closer for Kansas City missed the 2016 season with a tear in his right ulnar collateral ligament. A free-agent, Holland had a 2.15 ERA and 145 saves in his final five seasons with the Royals. Angels GM, Billy Eppler, told the OC Register, "He got through his bullpen and it looked like it was easy for him." Fletcher also reported the Angels are attempting to re-sign reliever, Andrew Bailey.
- Angels sign right-handed reliever, Justin Miller, to a minor-league contract
- Miller, 29, is a three-year veteran with 82 games of experience at the Major League level. Between one year with the Detroit Tigers and two with the Colorado Rockies, Miller has a 4.99 ERA with a 9.0 strikeout-per-nine rate.
- Angels claim right-handed pitcher, Vicente Campos, from Arizona Diamondbacks
- Campos, 24, is recovering from a broken arm and is expected to miss the beginning of the 2017 season. A former top organizational prospect in both the New York Yankees and Arizona Diamondbacks, Campos adds depth to the Angels' farm system. Primarily used as a starter, Campos has a 4.12 ERA in 109 Minor League games. Campos possesses a mid 90's fastball and pair of average off-speed offerings.
- Angels acquire outfielder, Cameron Maybin, from Detroit Tigers in exchange for pitching prospect, Victor Alcantara
- RHP Andrew Bailey, RHP Jhoulys Chacin, RHP Tim Lincecum, C Geovany Soto, RHP Jered Weaver, LHP C.J. Wilson become free agents
- Brett Oberholtzer clears waivers and is outrighted to Triple-A Salt Lake
- In a busy year for the 27-year-old, Oberholtzer went from being traded with prospects from Houston to Philadelphia for reliever, Ken Giles in December. In August, the four-year veteran was claimed off waivers by the Angels, and pitched 20 innings for the Halos, allowing 19 runs.
- Angels claim right-handed pitcher, Abel De Los Santos, from the Cincinnati Reds
- The Angels went and added to their farm system by simply taking over a contract, claiming De Los Santos, 23, from the Reds. The relief prospect works in the low-to-mid 90's with his fastball, and works in an above-average off-speed pitch to help him gain his 9.2 strikeouts-per-nine rate. Between two organizations and three affiliates, De Los Santos held a 2.81 ERA in 57.2 innings in the minors in 2016. The hard-throwing prospect pitched 5.2 innings with the Reds, allowing seven runs.
- Angels designate Brett Oberholtzer for assignment
- Angels sign left-handed pitcher, Jorge Gonzalez, to a minor league contract
- Signed as an international free agent out of Mexico, the 20-year-old southpaw pitched one year in the Los Angeles Dodgers organization. In 20 games with the Dodgers' Pioneer League (Rookie Ball) affiliate, Gonzalez threw 30.2 innings, striking out 28, while holding a 5.28 ERA
- Nick Buss elects free agency
- Buss, 29, hit .198 with a .593 OPS in 36 games with the Angels. In Triple-A Salt Lake, Buss hit .290 with a 23 doubles, six home runs, 46 RBI and an .807 OPS.
- A.J. Achter elects free agency
- Achter, 28, an off-season waiver claim from Philadelphia was a frequent flyer to Triple-A Salt Lake, being optioned six times and designated for assignment twice over the season. The third DFA came after Achter threw 37.2 innings with the Angels, holding a 3.11 ERA and 5.85 FIP.
- Johnny Giavotella elects free agency
- The fan-favorite and spark plug in the Angels lineup couldn't show the defensive versatility, and was designated for assignment in mid-August. Surprisingly, "Johnny Drama" was not added to the 40-man roster in September, and had his season end promptly with Salt Lake's final game. In two years with the Angels, Giavotella, 29, hit .267 with 80 RBI, 95 runs scored and a .680 OPS.
- Nick Buss and A.J. Achter clear waivers and are outrighted to Triple-A Salt Lake
- Angels claim right-handed pitchers, Kirby Yates and Blake Parker, from the New York Yankees
- Yates, 29, pitched in 41 games for the Yankees, holding a 5.23 ERA in 41.1 innings, striking out 50 and walking 19. In Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, the three-year veteran struck out 19 in 16.2 innings, allowing three runs.
- Parker, 31, was claimed by the Yankees in August by the Yankees after throwing one inning for the Seattle Mariners. With New York, the four-year veteran allowing nine runs in 16.1 innings, striking out 15 and walking eight.
- Angels designate A.J. Achter and Nick Buss for assignment
- Brendan Ryan elects free agency
- Ryan, 34, was traded to the Angels in May after Andrelton Simmons went on the 15-day disabled list with a torn left-thumb ligament. The 10-year veteran filled in for 17 games with the Angels, going 1-for-13. In Triple-A Salt Lake, Ryan hit .263 with a .686 OPS.
- Javy Guerra, Lucas Luetge and Todd Cunningham elect free agency
- Guerra, 31, pitched in seven games for the Angels, allowing four runs in 6.1 innings while striking out four. In Triple-A Salt Lake, Guerra had a 5.68 ERA in -51.2 innings, striking out 57 and walking 31.
- Luetge, 29, pitched in 48 games for Triple-A Salt Lake, holding a 4.85 ERA in 55.2 innings, striking out 58 and walking 26.
- Cunningham, 27, played in 20 games for the Angels, hitting .148 with a .438 OPS in 29 plate appearance. In Triple-A Salt Lake, Cunningham hit .78 with 23 stolen bases, 43 RBI and a .765 OPS in 417 plate appearances over 99 games.
This article was written and published by Scout.com Senior Publisher, Taylor Blake Ward. For more updates on the Los Angeles Angels, follow Taylor on Twiter, @TaylorBlakeWard.