Matching the Los Angeles Angels With Their Most Likely MLB Trade Deadline Targets

By Braulio Perez
New York Yankees v New York Mets
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This isn't where we thought the Los Angeles Angels would be heading into late July. With a 52-49 record, the Angels are seemingly out of the AL West race and are 5.5 games back in the AL Wild Card hunt.

For Mike Trout, who signed a historic deal during the offseason, it's got to be disappointing. But, there's still time to improve things and make a push for the postseason. Here's a look at five players the Angels should target leading up to the deadline, with pitching certainly being a focus.

1. Jason Vargas, SP, New York Mets

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There's no beating around the bush, the Angels' starting rotation needs an upgrade. The unit holds a cumulative 5.34 ERA and can't be trusted when it comes to slowing down opposing sluggers. While Jason Vargas may not be an ace, the lefty still has the kind of stuff GMs should target. Vargas was at his best in the month of June, posting a 2.70 ERA in five starts, and he could bring some much-needed stability to the Angels' rotation.

2. Robbie Ray, SP, Arizona Diamondbacks

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Robbie Ray was born to sit down batters. On the season, he's got a sensational 152 Ks to his name, while adding an 8-6 record and 3.92 ERA. Though there have been times he's struggled with his command, Ray is a surefire stud. Getting him to the Angels would bring an electric arm to Los Angeles and help this team make a playoff push.

3. Sergio Romo, RP, Miami Marlins

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Sergio Romo has been one of the few bright spots for Derek Jeter's Miami Marlins. He's got 16 saves on the year and a 3.79 ERA. At 36, he's also got the kind of experience you can't teach on a day-to-day basis. He had plenty of postseason experience with the San Francisco Giants, being part of the team's World Series winning squads in 2010, 2012 and 2014. He'd be a great veteran arm to add to the bullpen, and likely wouldn't cost as much as some of the other names on this list.

4. Matthew Boyd, SP, Detroit Tigers

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You've surely heard Matthew Boyd's name mentioned in different trade rumors in recent weeks. The Detroit Tigers' stud is certainly a wanted man. He's 6-8 this year with a 4.13 ERA. However, he's a left-handed starter, which makes him a hot commodity, and has racked up 160 Ks thus far. With the dynamic Angels' offense behind him, Boyd could win quite a few games in Los Angeles if a deal goes down.

5. Jake Diekman, RP, Kansas City Royals

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At 37-64, the Kansas City Royals are a whopping 24.5 games back in the AL Central standings. They're in full rebuilding mode, which means they'll likely be shipping out top players before the deadline. Jake Diekman could be one of those players. He's got 59 strikeouts this season and a 4.76 ERA in 46 appearances. He's not a superstar by any means, but adding another lefty arm is rarely a bad idea, and he shouldn't cost too much to acquire.

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