Blue Jays Notes: Cliff Pennington Joins Angels


The Toronto Blue Jays will have to look for infield depth elsewhere after Cliff Pennington accepted a 2-year deal from the Los Angeles Angels. The terms of the deal are as follows:

2016: $1.5m

2017: $2.25m

Performance incentives are included in the deal

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Pennington joins Andrelton Simmons in Los Angeles as they revamp the quality of their infield. With Johnny Giavotella being the only thing blocking Pennington from being a regular at 2B, you can see why this team would be attractive to him. The Angels are really stepping up efforts to improve their infield defensive abilities.

In Pennington, they add a player that has steadily been a slightly above-average defender while playing 4 different positions since 2012 (2B, SS, 3B, and LF). He knows the A.L. West extremely well having played for the A’s for 5 seasons.

The only option they had on their roster before adding him was 26-year-old Taylor Featherson, who isn’t much of an offensive threat at all and doesn’t have Pennington’s breadth of position flexibility. It’s a great addition to a team that needed the improvement on the bench.

While he didn’t provide the Jays with the added offensive boost they may have expected when they added him to the roster mid-season (.160/.270/.280), he did provide the team with good depth and a 0.2 dWAR over 33 games.

Next: Blue Jays 2015 year in review: R.A. Dickey

Of course, most people will remember his time as a Blue Jay most for his pitching performance in the playoffs when the wheels came off and the Jays needed someone to eat an inning. He wound up giving up 2 hits, and I think it’s worth reliving that moment as it was a fairly memorable one.

It was extremely unlikely that the Blue Jays were going to be a factor for Pennington as they expect Devon Travis to be back into the fold in 2016, leaving no room for Pennington on the bench. We wish him all the best as he heads for California and the beautiful West Coast beaches.