The last time we saw C.J. Wilson, he was getting lifted in the first inning of Game Three of the American League Division Series. The 35-year old is signed for one more year before he hits free agency, and is due to earn $20 million next season. The Angels would almost certainly have to eat some of that money, but they are trying to clear payroll for - get this - Alex Gordon. Would the Royals make a trade that helps a rival team land their coveted left-fielder?
(2/2) Angels are one serious suitor for Alex Gordon and are trying to clear CJ Wilson's contract to free up payroll space.— Dave Gershman (@Dave_Gershman) December 8, 2015
Wilson was 8-8 with a 3.89 ERA in 21 starts with 1.4 fWAR, missing the last two months with elbow inflammation. Wilson was barely above replacement level in 2014, with a 4.51 ERA, but he won 17 games in 2013 with a 3.2 fWAR. Wilson has struck out 7.9 hitters per nine-innings, but has a walk rate that is a bit high at 3.8 per-nine innings. Wilson averages about 90 mph with his fastball and has a deep repertoire of pitches with a solid changeup, although his breaking pitches have been less effective lately.
Wilson is a bit of an injury risk, and at his age may not have much left in the tank. The Royals are probably interested because Wilson won't require much in the way of prospects, and it would be just a one-year commitment, giving them payroll flexibility for the future. But for a team looking to contend next year, this doesn't look like the best option out there, particularly if it helps the Angels land Alex Gordon.