Carpino has high expectations for 2014 Angels
Club president looking forward to team's pursuit of a return to the playoffs
TEMPE, Ariz. -- John Carpino started off in the billboard industry more than 30 years ago, a career that took him to Tucson, Ariz., Chicago, Phoenix and Los Angeles until 1985, when he joined a company owned by Arte Moreno named Outdoor Systems. The two have teamed up ever since.
After 18 years in Moreno's billboard business, Carpino followed Moreno to the Angels in 2003, first as the senior vice president of sales and marketing for six seasons, and then as the eighth president in Angels history in Nov. 2009.
In honor of Presidents' Day, MLB.com has reached out to the presidents of all 30 teams for a "State of the Union" in the early portion of Spring Training. Carpino oversees all areas of business, sales, marketing and communications, and he is also a diehard baseball fan. Recently, he answered a set of questions about the organization via email.
MLB.com: What do you think of the roster as we start Spring Training, and what will be the most important factor to avoid a fifth consecutive playoff absence?
Carpino: We like our roster a lot. We went into the offseason with a plan to build depth in all areas. From the lineup to the bullpen to the starting rotation, we feel we are a deeper, more versatile and well-rounded club this year than in the past. We should be an explosive offensive team, and our entire starting rotation should perform significantly better than it did in 2013. We believe in the top of our rotation led by Jered [Weaver], C.J. [Wilson] and Garrett [Richards], and their potential in 2014.
MLB.com: What do you hope the reshaped coaching staff will bring to the team, and how important was it to the organization to get new faces under manager Mike Scioscia?
Carpino: We all sat down following the 2013 season and agreed that we needed to bring some different dynamics to our clubhouse and coaching staff. It is important for us as an organization to give our players the best resources in every area, and we feel very good about adding [hitting coach] Don [Baylor], [third-base coach] Gary [DiSarcina], [assistant hitting coach] Dave [Hansen] and [player information coach] Rick [Eckstein] to the staff this year. They are all great teachers and communicators with their own style, and are all committed to helping our players get the most out of their abilities.
MLB.com: How important will it be for you to get Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton playing at the level they showed before arriving in Anaheim?
Carpino: It is very important for all of our players to be healthy and performing at their best. Albert and Josh are a big part of our club and have been two of the best players in the game for a long time. Their career track record speaks for itself. Josh is a career .295 hitter who has averaged  home runs per year, and Albert will hit his 500th career home run this year and is a career .321 hitter who averages  home runs and  RBIs per season.
That being said, we need Albert to be Albert and Josh to be Josh! Our expectations for them are high, although probably not as high as the expectations they place on themselves. A lot of what we tried to accomplish this offseason was to create a more well-rounded team. I believe Albert and Josh both understand that it takes an entire team to win a championship.
MLB.com: He's four years away from free agency, but is making sure Mike Trout spends his entire career with the Angels already an important topic for the organization?
Carpino: Mike is exactly the type of player and person every team dreams of drafting and developing. Clearly, Mike has accomplished things early in his career that puts him in extraordinary company, and his makeup and work ethic give us every reason to believe he will be a great player for a long time. Our goal each year is to have a chance to play for and win the World Series, and we would love for Mike to lead us to those championships and accomplish all his professional goals wearing an Angels uniform.
MLB.com: How would you describe the status of negotiations with the City of Anaheim regarding a new stadium lease?
Carpino: We have been in discussions for approximately three years and are frustrated by the lack of progress. As we enter another season without a deal, we are looking at all our options to make sure we have certainty for our fans and the team's future.
MLB.com: What are you most excited about for 2014?
Carpino: The season itself. We are the ultimate reality show on almost every night, and each game has its share of ups, downs, twists and turns. I love watching every game -- especially in person. Each game, beginning this year at home on March 31 and into April and May, is a very important step to accomplishing our goal of playing deep into October. I want our fans to have the chance to experience the excitement and anxiety of the postseason again.