The MLB Winter Meetings are underway in Nashville, Tennessee, and there will be plenty of player movement in the coming weeks. While we await to hear where Shohei Ohtani will land, one of his teammates on the Los Angeles Angels will apparently not be leaving Southern California anytime soon.
Angels general manager Perry Minasian said it clearly Tuesday: "Mike Trout is not getting traded. 100 percent."
Just to end whatever speculation might have been out there, Perry Minasian said today “Mike Trout is not getting traded. 100 percent.”
— Jeff Fletcher (@JeffFletcherOCR) December 5, 2023
"One thing about Mike — those of you that have been around him, day in and day out — there's no better pro," said Minasian of Trout during November's general managers meetings. "If you ask him, he'll tell you he was very disappointed that he couldn't play more. He knows how much we need him to play. He's gonna do everything he can this offseason to play. And he's an Angel."
A USA Today report in September stated that the Angels were open to moving the three-time AL MVP. All Trout said at the end of the season was, "I go through this every year. That's private conversations I have with [owner] Arte [Moreno] and [team president] John [Carpino], and I'm doing the same thing I did last, what, 13 years — just go into the offseason, clear my mind, get ready for spring and wearing an Angels uniform in spring."
Of course, trading Trout, who has played in the postseason only once in his career, isn't a simple transaction to execute. The 32-year-old has a full no-trade clause in his contract, one in which he's owed $250 million over the next seven years, running through the 2030 season. Any trade would have to come with his approval.
The Angels have had eight straight seasons with a losing record and have made the playoffs once since 2009 — a period in which they've gone through four general managers. They're now on their fourth manager since Mike Scioscia stepped down in 2018.
With Ohtani looking like he will be leaving the Angels this winter, now would be the time for the team to pull off a reset, and getting assets for Trout would be ideal. But the details of his contract make that incredibly difficult, if the Angels were interested in moving him in the first place.
If Ohtani does leave Anaheim, Minasian appears to have a directive from ownership to be aggressive in improving the team for 2024. Spending money has never been an issue for the Angels in the past, but spending money wisely would be a good start in turning around a long period of disappointment for the franchise.