Before seeing both players on the field with their new teams, we will go ahead and say the transaction fits the Angels’ need to perfection.
There is, evidently, a will to be better than they were in 2022.
The organization addressed two areas of need with a player who can be deployed at both of them.
“Angel shortstops and third basemen last year had a combined OPS of .602. That was the lowest in the American League. Great to see them make this addition!” Codify Baseball tweeted.
Angel shortstops and third basemen last year had a combined OPS of .602. That was the lowest in the American League.
Great to see them make this addition!pic.twitter.com/eFznq9bQTk
— Codify (@CodifyBaseball) November 18, 2022
Part of that lousy offensive performance stems from the fact Anthony Rendon, the starter at third base, as injured for most of the season.
Two Potential Upgrades For The Offense
Rendon is a career .847 OPS hitter, so if he is healthy, it will go a long way in changing that awful number next season.
As for Urshela, he is mainly a third baseman but since Rendon is there, he is expected to play a lot of shortstop.
He had a .767 OPS last year with the Twins, and is at .750 for his career.
Those two carried the team this past season and received little to no help from his teammates.
The Angels have correctly identified that pitching was not the only need this roster had.
They are serious about contending in 2023, Ohtani’s last season of team control before hitting free agency.