If in recent weeks, leading up to Opening Day for the Halos, you had thought to yourself "Man, the Angels had a quiet off-season", then I honestly wouldn't blame you. You'd be totally wrong, but I wouldn't blame you. That feeling comes from the hesitance of the Angels front office to sign any big shot left fielders, while putting together a ho-hum platoon instead, especially since that position was such a disaster last season and it was number one on everyone's minds going into Winter Meetings.
Here's the thing, though: The Angels picked up Andrelton Simmons, so was it REALLY a quiet off-season? Today, we're getting a pretty cool reminder of the type of player the Angels acquired in exchange for Erick Aybar, and the Angels two top pitching prospects, Sean Newcomb and Chris Ellis. Andrelton Simmons is Wilson's MLB Defensive Player of the Year award winner for 2015, and he's set to receive his statue tonight at Angels Stadium before the game.
This is the third time Simmons was named best defensive shortstop, but it's the first time he's been the top overall defensive player at ANY position. The winners are determined using a formula that combines defensive, advanced metrics and data logged by scouts. All of that number crunching from all games played in 2015, and the top dog is the guy currently locked in as Angels SS for the next five years. This
Simmons led all NL shortstops in Defensive Runs Saved (25), Ultimate Zone Rating (17.3) and FanGraphs' Defensive Runs Above Average (23.9), which accounts for fielding runs and positional adjustment. If you're not familiar with any of those stats or metrics, then i'll translate: He's really, really, really good. And he's all ours!
So, while we take some time getting used to a quiet(relative to recent years) off-season featuring no big splash free agents, we can also dance a little jig at the fact that the Angels now have one of, if not THE, best gloves in all of MLB. Not too shabby.