- The Story: Baseball America rates the Angel farm system in the bottom half of the league. The Monkey Says: Tell me something I don’t know. The Angel system hasn’t been good for the last year or two after graduating so many prospects and it is going to take time for it to recover but they seem to be on the right track. The bigger problem is that the Rangers generally have the best ranked minor league stock, so the Halos are going to have to find a way to hold them off.
- The Story: The Seattle Mariners are pursuing Chone Figgins and might be the favorites to get him. The Monkey Says: If the rumored deal of four years for $30+ million is all Seattle is offering, I have a feeling the Angels will swoop in at the last minute to match and keep Figgy in Anaheim.
- The Story: The Angels are ramping up efforts to bring back John Lackey at the behest of Arte Moreno. The Monkey Says: The Angels are of course denying this, but supposedly they are starting to get spooked by the price for Roy Halladay and are highly concerned about the prospect of Big John heading to an AL West foe like the Mariners.
- The Story: A winter meeting primer for the LA Angels and the rest of the AL West. The Monkey Says: No real new information here, but it at least gets one warmed up and excited for the beginning of the real wheeling and dealing portion of the off-season.
- The Story: Chone Figgins isn’t really a utility player anymore. The Monkey Says: Yeah, I’ve been saying this since the season ended. He has played third base almost exclusively for the last three years but his ability to play any position is supposed to boost his free agent value, only he really isn’t a good defender at any position but third. Frankly, I still say Figgy will only sign with a team that allows him to remain a full-time third baseman.