There's always a story when there's a failed trade. And there's always the stray who's frustrated about a trade gone bad.
On Thursday, columnist Mark Whicker sent me a tweet about something Arte Moreno said at a fundraiser for Long Beach State baseball.
"He also discusses a Joc Pederson trade," the tweet said.
Well, I called the Angels on Friday, spoke with team President John Carpino and Executive Vice President John McLaren, and the story had legs.
We met Monday night at dinner and spoke with Moreno for about a half-hour and covered it in more detail. But Carpino and McLaren said their agreement was to protect Moreno's comments and not to talk about specific trades that didn't work out.
However, there were plenty of winners in the story and lots of losers.
Here's one loser, someone the Angels were very close to trading for.
Over the weekend, the Angels were calling the Dodgers about third baseman Justin Turner. The Dodgers were hesitant to include Turner in any deal, so the Angels wound up with Trot Nixon, who had nothing going on at the time. He was basically converted to third base by the Angels. Now, as baseball stands, the Dodgers have to give Turner back.
The Angels also had a trade to send right-hander Alex Meyer to the Dodgers for left-hander Ross Stripling.
The Angels made a $26-million guarantee to Addison Reed for one year, then traded him for outfielder Ben Revere, a drop-off for the Sox.
When Ryan Madson went to the Phillies, he asked to be moved because the Angels made it clear they didn't want to re-sign him. When the Dodgers made it clear they didn't want him back, the Angels re-signed him. When the Phillies wanted Addison Reed, the Angels said no. So he landed with the Phillies.
The Angels gave Matt Shoemaker a $6-million contract to start in the season. When the Padres decided to bring along Luis Perdomo, the Angels made the trade for Shoemaker.
And on and on.
Although he wasn't on hand for the meeting Monday night, Stanton Mauro, who played for the Angels in 1994, and Tanner Nixon, who played for the Angels in 1995, both recalled how much they benefited from the trades.
"It made the team more dynamic," Mauro said. "There was something good coming out of each trade. There was something about our club that was better off for it."
Nixon said he had three pretty good years playing for the Angels before becoming a free agent. He earned $64,000 his first year in the major leagues, $88,000 his second year and $150,000 his third year.
"My team got better," he said. "It's what you want."
When the Angels signed Bengie Molina, an Atlanta Braves assistant scout who was watching the Angels' farm system sent the Braves' watch manager to watch Molina play for Long Beach State. That turned out to be one of the best days of Moreno's life. He'd made a shrewd move.