The St. Louis Cardinals won the Grapefruit League title with a 17-7 record.
They are the favorites to win the NL Central division, just like they did last year.
Who won the Cactus League?
Your 2023 Los Angeles Angels.
It’s also the second-straight season they earn the unofficial award.
“Make of it what you will: The Angels have won the Cactus League for the second consecutive season,” Angels insider Sam Blum tweeted.
Make of it what you will:
The Angels have won the Cactus League for the second consecutive season.
— Sam Blum (@SamBlum3) March 29, 2023
Last year, the Angels rode their strong spring training to a 27-17 start in the regular season.
Things happened, though.
The team started to slump collectively, the manager was fired, things started spiraling out of control, and the squad was out of the playoff hunt before you knew it.
Overall they finished with a typical Angels record: 73-89, third in the AL West and with no hope of making the playoffs despite having Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani for most of the season.
This time, the organization is feeling the pressure to perform.
Not only are fans mad about the fact they haven’t played October baseball since 2014, but they have to play well and convince Ohtani to sign for the long term.
The Japanese star is a free agent after the season and will look to sign a mega-deal after the Fall Classic.
The Angels would love to convince him that their days as a dysfunctional, losing franchise are behind them.
To do that, they will need to win; and to do that, they will have to improve coaching, player development, scouting, and other areas.
All things considered, the Angels are entering a pivotal season.
They will find out, in a few months, whether they will keep building around Trout and Ohtani, or if it’s going to be just the former.NEXT: Shohei Ohtani Dominates Another Important MLB Category