The January 18th, 2013 edition of daily news for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim including Aybar to play in the World Baseball Classic but Albert Pujols will not, Wells considered likely to be traded and much more...
The Story: Erick Aybar will play for the Domincan Republic in the World Baseball Classic, but Albert Pujols is not on the provisional roster.
The Monkey Says: Aybar is the only Angel in the WBC right now, though non-roster Invitee Fernando Cabrera will be playing for Puerto Rico, but that hardly counts. This is a nice honor for Aybar, but it looks like he is probably going to be more of a bench player.
The Story: Jim Bowden speculates that Vernon Wells is one of the five outfielders most likely to be traded.
The Monkey Says: I think there is a good chance too, but I must also mention that Jim Bowden is a dolt who doesn't really know anything. If there was one reservation I have about predicting a Wells trade, it is that the Angels haven't even brought in a veteran outfielder on a minor league deal to compete for a reserve outfield job, which suggests to me that the Angels may not be planning on moving Wells (or just plain realize that he is untradeable).
The Story: Albert Pujols has been officially ruled out of the World Baseball Classic.
The Monkey Says: This is concerning. Last week, Pujols said he would play if his knee checked out OK when he reported to camp (players can be added to the WBC roster up until February 20th). That same story we reiterated early yesterday but then hours later, everyone changed their mind and he is out before even testing his knee out. One would hope that this is Pujols being cautious with his health (possibly with a reminder from the team that they dropped a quarter of a billion dollars on him) and not him pulling out because his knee is not as fine as the report claims.
The Story: Jerry Dipoto said he is "not at all" monitoring the free agent market in response to a question about the team's possible interest in Kyle Lohse.
The Monkey Says: Well, I think we all know better than to believe what JeDi says, but this is a pretty flat denial by his standards. If true, I think it is kind of too bad because Lohse would certainly be an upgrade and a good value now that it looks like his market has dried up.
The Story: Ryan Madson is on or ahead of schedule in his throwing program, but Tony Pena will not be ready for camp.
The Monkey Says: That is great news for Madson, but it doesn't mean he is going to be effective right away. History shows that it can take a few months before a guy gets his feel for pitching back once he starts pitching for real again after Tommy John surgery. As for Pena, that's too bad. TJ surgery has become so routine that we seldom hear about slow recoveries from it, but it sounds like he is the exception. He was probably not going to be a serious contender for a roster spot regardless.
The Story: Some think Mike Trout could be one of the next young stars to sign a long-term contract extension.
The Monkey Says: YESDOITNOWOHMYGODPLEASEDOITNOWWWWWWWWWW!!!!!!!!!! Again, this just seems to be speculation and nothing more, though the Angels would be stupid if they didn't at least ask Trout if he would be interested in a long-term deal that buys out a few years of his free agency... or possibly even a few decades... and maybe the draft rights to all of his unborn male children.
The Story: A listing of some of the amazing historical records Mike Trout set in his 2012 season.
The Monkey Says: Because there is nothing else to write about, so people are now just recycling all the "Look how awesome Mike Trout is!" stats.
The Story: A look at some of the Angels prospects that put up big power numbers in the Pioneer League in 2012.
The Monkey Says: Hinkle, who is #22 in the MWAH prospect rankings, is the most intriguing to me because he combined it with great patience. He had a monstrous season in the minors in 2012 and could become something of a hot commodity if he is able to repeat something close to that level of performance the next level up where he isn't mostly feasting on raw high school arms.
The Story: Angels prospect Michael Roth recounts his own tale of being a "catfishing" target in college.
The Monkey Says: Well, at least he wasn't in on it like a certain football player (allegedly).