This move may come as very little surprise to those who follow the Angels closely. After his first season in Anaheim, Gary Matthews, Jr. and Mike Scioscia were like oil and water. Their personalities didn't work well together, and they rarely viewed things the same way.
But even beyond that dynamic, from a baseball standpoint there just wasn't enough room in the outfield or the lineup for Matthews. It was something he noticed immediately after the signing of Torii Hunter, and that's why he's been open to trade scenarios for quite some time. And who can blame him? The guy wants to play and compete.
ANAHEIM, CA – The Angels Friday acquired right-handed pitcher Brian Stokes from the New York Mets in exchange for outfielder Gary Matthews Jr. in an announcement by General Manager Tony Reagins.
Stokes, 30, comes to the Angels after making 64 relief appearances with the Mets in 2009 going 2-4 with a 3.97 ERA (70.1 IP – 31 ER). New York purchased Stokes from Tampa Bay on November 28, 2007. In two seasons with the Mets, Stokes compiled a 3-4 record with a 3.82 ERA in 93 appearances, including one start.
The Montclair, CA native was originally signed by Tampa Bay as a non-drafted free agent in 1998. He saw Major League time with the Rays in 2006 & 2007, combining for a 3-7 mark and a 6.46 ERA (86.1 IP – 62 ER) in 64 appearances (4 starts). In four seasons at the Major League level, Stokes has posted a 6-11 mark with one save and a 5.02 ERA in 157 appearances (5 starts).
Stokes graduated from Jurupa High School in Riverside, CA and attended Riverside Community College.
Matthews Jr. was signed by the Angels to a five-year contract on Nov. 22, 2006 and spent three seasons with the Halos. In that span, he appeared in 369 games batting .249 (312/1255) with 30 home runs and 168 RBI.