Albert Pujols' journey from St. Louis to Anaheim surprised me, to be sure, but it also leads me to believe that it will begin a chain reaction of sorts, based on an overcrowded Angels' roster.
Pujols is a first baseman by trade, and will surely start at first for the Halos. He will also be designated hitter on occasion, but the point is, incumbent first baseman Mark Trumbo now finds himself a spare part. Trumbo, who had a solid rookie year, with 29 homers and 87 RBIs, played 11 games in the outfield, but only 23 innings overall out there. General manager Jerry DiPoto indicated at his press conference in Dallas that Trumbo "has some history at third base" and the outfield, but his hot corner time must have occurred in high school. A native of Anaheim, Trumbo surely must see the handwriting on the wall, since the Angels are already on the hook for $9 million for DH Bobby Abreu, who will be 38 by opening day and is essentially untradeable.
The Angels also have a full complement of outfielders, including Torii Hunter ($18 million), Vernon Wells ($21 million), Peter Bourjos, Mike Trout and now Trumbo. Trout's considered a future star, and DiPoto says he's not interested in moving Bourjos. Somebody's going to have to go, it seems; would they pick up more than half of Hunter's money in a trade? No one would take him otherwise.
You can bet the fallout from the Angels' shopping spree will continue to be felt throughout the winter. It could be an opportunity for the Nationals - or the Orioles - to pick up some help for 2012. Nats GM Mike Rizzo says he laid some groundwork for some future deals this week.
I'm guessing he meant immediate future. Let's see what happens between now and New Year's Eve.