Of course Billy Eppler would continue to wheel-and-deal even when the season has just started. Of course it happens after spending time recapping Eppler’s entire offseason. But the Angels were in need of some Minor League depth with Ian Kinsler going down and the price? Catcher, Carlos Perez. Most will remember Perez from his MLB debut when he hit a walkoff home run against Seattle back in 2015.
Perez began losing playing time over the years, whether it was Maldonado coming in and becoming the everyday guy, Juan Graterol being scooped off of waivers for depth, and Rene Rivera getting a Major League deal this past winter. He was out of options and was a guarantee to get claimed, the Angels did well to get something back for Perez.
In Schimpf, the Angels have acquired a 29-year old second baseman who is a primary example of the “three true outcomes” craze. He walked at a 13.7% clip, struck out 35.5% of the time, and hit 14 home runs in only 197 PAs. He’ll mostly serve as a second base option if Kinsler or god forbid Zack Cozart, went down. Schimpf will also give the team options in lieu of the usual suspects (i.e. Kaleb Cowart and Nolan Fontana). He’ll also probably challenge Chris Carter for the most home runs in the Pacific Coast League.
Schimpf really leaped into the picture during his rookie season, 2016, when he walloped 20 home runs in 330 PAs. He maintained a healthy 12.7 BB%, but also had astronomical K numbers (31.8%). Schimpf is also a flyball heavy hitter, hitting the ball in the air 64.6% of the time in his career. He has one goal in mind when he bats: get the ball in the air.
In short, the Angels acquired some much-needed middle infield depth while trading from an area of a surplus. Perez was firmly planted behind Maldonado and Rivera on the depth chart and that wasn’t going to change soon. It was important to obtain something for Perez rather than outright losing him. Now only Nick Tropeano remains from the Hank Conger trade with Houston. At the very least, Schimpf is a fun kind of player to have in your organization.