Report: Angels interested in Athletics' Lawrie

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With David Freese liable to sign elsewhere as a free agent this winter, the Los Angeles Angels could turn to a division rival to fill their void at third base.

The Angels are reportedly interested in Oakland Athletics infielder Brett Lawrie, according to Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register, who notes that the two clubs have had discussions about the 25-year-old. Lawrie's name has surfaced repeatedly in trade rumors since the Athletics acquired Jed Lowrie from Houston last month, though, and the Cleveland Indians, Detroit Tigers, and Chicago White Sox are thought to be interested, as well.

Lawrie, who was shipped to Oakland last winter as part of the deal that brought Josh Donaldson to Toronto, had an inconsistent first season with the Athletics, managing just 0.6 WAR despite establishing new career-highs in games played (149) and home runs (16).

Though the former first-round pick hit .282/.318/.417 in the first half of 2015, Lawrie hit just .233/.276/.395 after the All-Star break. His contact skills eroded, too, and he walked in a career-low 4.7 percent of his 602 plate appearances, fueling an unimpressive .299 on-base percentage and 94 wRC+.

Season OBP ISO wRC+ BB% K%
2012 .324 .132 97 6.2% 16.0%
2013 .315 .142 95 6.8% 15.4%
2014 .301 .174 103 5.7% 17.4%
2015 .299 .148 94 4.7% 23.9%

Lauded for his defense throughout his tenure with the Blue Jays, Lawrie regressed in the field in 2015, as well, receiving below-average grades from both defensive runs saved (minus-3) and ultimate zone rating (minus-8.7).

Still, the Angels have few appealing internal options to replace Freese, with 25-year-old Kyle Kubitza tentatively expected to take over at third base in 2016 despite just 19 MLB games on his resume.

Report: Angels interested in Athletics' Lawrie
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