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The Rotation - 2016 and beyond


Angelsjunky

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I know some want the Angels to go after a David Price, but I have a hard time seeing it happening. For one, the payroll still has Wilson and Weaver, not to mention Hamilton. The Angels are more likely to splurge on a left fielder like Cespedes or Heyward than a starter. Secondly, they still have a ton of options - many of them just don't look as good anymore. So let's take a look.

 

By my count, these are the potential starters next year, in groups:

 

Group A: Garret Richards, Hector Santiago, Andrew Heaney

 

These three are locks next year barring the dimly possible but unlikely trade of Santiago for hitting help. Richards doesn't look like the same pitcher as he did last year, but I suppose we can hope he at least finds a medium between the two. Heaney looks legit and may already be the team's best starter.

 

Group B: Matt Shoemaker, Tyler Skaggs, Nick Tropeano, Cory Rasmus, Drew Rucinski

Here we come to a variety of question marks. After a terrible start, Shoe has been pretty good although is still prone to a blow-out ever month or so. Consider that he gave up 5+ ER in 6 of his 23 starts. At this point he looks more like the #4-5 starter that he was originally projected to be rather than the #2-3 that he was in 2014. Skaggs should still be considered a potential good starter, but will likely be babied this year. Tropeano remains trade bait. Rasmus is a nice player to have on hand, if healthy. Rucinski was DFAed, I believe, but am not sure if he's leaving the organization.

 

Group C: Jered Weaver, CJ Wilson

The old guys. Jered is barely hitting 80mph these days, but I imagine will muscle through another year, even if as the mop-up man in the bullpen. His presence is valued. CJ was actually solid this year but who knows how he'll come back. If he has a strong first half next year he could be shopped. Together these two will make $40 million next year, which will almost certainly be their last - for CJ as an Angel, for Jered as a major leaguer.

 

Group D: Sean Newcomb, Chris Ellis, Nate Smith, Tyler deLoach, Kyle McGowin

Here we have the prospects. I listed only those that I thought had a chance of starting in the majors next year at some point (e.g. Alcantara will likely be a reliever and Gatto is too far away). It is a varied group, with Newcomb being a potential staff ace, Ellis and Smith being potential mid-rotation starters, and DeLoach and McGowin more likely being back rotation starters or relievers. But all could potentially help next year.

 

So the 2016 rotation will be a varied cast. 2017 is easier to predict, with Weaver and Wilson gone, Skaggs further from surgery, and Newcomb most certainly a major leaguer by then. How about Richards, Heaney, Newcomb, Skaggs, and Ellis? But 2016 is trickier. Group A will most likely be the #1-3 starters, in some order, but then what? Will Skaggs start in the bullpen? Will Jered "Mr. Fantastic" Weaver be given one more chance in the rotation or will he, clearly seeing the writing on the wall, volunteer to hang in the bullpen and clubhouse to finish his contract? When will Newcomb be ready? Etc.

 

I think that, by the end of the year, you want that 2017 rotation in place, which means that some of Santiago, Wilson, Shoemaker, and Tropeano could be shipped out. It would make most sense to trade the first to, as Shoe and Trope are cheap and Santiago is in arbitration and has trade value.

 

Anyone, one thing I DON'T see happening is the Angels signing or trading for a big name starter. They just have too many pieces, and the upgrading at LF, C, and maybe 2B or 3B are more pressing. They have a lot to work with here, and hopefully will assemble the right staff for the near and further future.

Edited by Angelsjunky
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Nate Smith could be considered in Group D as well. 

 

I think I'd look at moving Santiago into the pen or consider trading him before moving Shoemaker. Team has so many lefties stocked up in the minors now, and some team out there would be more likely to overvalue and pay more for Santiago than Shoemaker. Shoe at least can give the team more innings and limit damage in a blowout, where Santiago tends to completely implode and be out after 4. 

 

Don't think there's any chance at all that Weave isn't penciled in to be in the '16 rotation for the duration unless he retires or Scioscia opts out. 

I think they'll aggressively look to trade Wilson this offseason as well, but with recent staff struggles I'm starting to think they may want to start the season with him. Either way, I don't think he finishes '16 as an Angel.

 

Tropeano should stay in AAA and be the go-to spot starter guy or fill-in when an injury occurs. He'd have more value being a year-round 'on-call' option than being full-time in rotation.

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Oh! Skaggs! 

 

Unless he dominates in ST, think he should start in AAA so team can better track his innings and allow him to work out kinks and endurance there for a few weeks. 

 

Tropeano will get a shot - it's only a matter of time before someone in the rotation stinks it up or gets injured, and then he gets an opp. Important for an organization to have someone like that who can step in as soon as someone goes down, either for a day or for a few weeks.

Edited by totdprods
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What totdprods said about lefties, very few teams have won consistently with mostly lefty starters due to teams having more righty bats.

Right now going forward beyond 2016, they have for lefties Santiago, Heaney, Skaggs, Newcomb, Nate Smith, and DeLoach.

 

Don't get me wrong, lefties are a great commodity but you can only have so many of them.

Edited by Angel Oracle
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I know some want the Angels to go after a David Price, but I have a hard time seeing it happening. For one, the payroll still has Wilson and Weaver, not to mention Hamilton. The Angels are more likely to splurge on a left fielder like Cespedes or Heyward than a starter. Secondly, they still have a ton of options - many of them just don't look as good anymore. So let's take a look.

By my count, these are the potential starters next year, in groups:

Group A: Garret Richards, Hector Santiago, Andrew Heaney

These three are locks next year barring the dimly possible but unlikely trade of Santiago for hitting help. Richards doesn't look like the same pitcher as he did last year, but I suppose we can hope he at least finds a medium between the two. Heaney looks legit and may already be the team's best starter.

Group B: Matt Shoemaker, Tyler Skaggs, Nick Tropeano, Cory Rasmus, Drew Rucinski

Here we come to a variety of question marks. After a terrible start, Shoe has been pretty good although is still prone to a blow-out ever month or so. Consider that he gave up 5+ ER in 6 of his 23 starts. At this point he looks more like the #4-5 starter that he was originally projected to be rather than the #2-3 that he was in 2014. Skaggs should still be considered a potential good starter, but will likely be babied this year. Tropeano remains trade bait. Rasmus is a nice player to have on hand, if healthy. Rucinski was DFAed, I believe, but am not sure if he's leaving the organization.

Group C: Jered Weaver, CJ Wilson

The old guys. Jered is barely hitting 80mph these days, but I imagine will muscle through another year, even if as the mop-up man in the bullpen. His presence is valued. CJ was actually solid this year but who knows how he'll come back. If he has a strong first half next year he could be shopped. Together these two will make $40 million next year, which will almost certainly be their last - for CJ as an Angel, for Jered as a major leaguer.

Group D: Sean Newcomb, Chris Ellis, Nate Smith, Tyler deLoach, Kyle McGowin

Here we have the prospects. I listed only those that I thought had a chance of starting in the majors next year at some point (e.g. Alcantara will likely be a reliever and Gatto is too far away). It is a varied group, with Newcomb being a potential staff ace, Ellis and Smith being potential mid-rotation starters, and DeLoach and McGowin more likely being back rotation starters or relievers. But all could potentially help next year.

So the 2016 rotation will be a varied cast. 2017 is easier to predict, with Weaver and Wilson gone, Skaggs further from surgery, and Newcomb most certainly a major leaguer by then. How about Richards, Heaney, Newcomb, Skaggs, and Ellis? But 2016 is trickier. Group A will most likely be the #1-3 starters, in some order, but then what? Will Skaggs start in the bullpen? Will Jered "Mr. Fantastic" Weaver be given one more chance in the rotation or will he, clearly seeing the writing on the wall, volunteer to hang in the bullpen and clubhouse to finish his contract? When will Newcomb be ready? Etc.

I think that, by the end of the year, you want that 2017 rotation in place, which means that some of Santiago, Wilson, Shoemaker, and Tropeano could be shipped out. It would make most sense to trade the first to, as Shoe and Trope are cheap and Santiago is in arbitration and has trade value.

Anyone, one thing I DON'T see happening is the Angels signing or trading for a big name starter. They just have too many pieces, and the upgrading at LF, C, and maybe 2B or 3B are more pressing. They have a lot to work with here, and hopefully will assemble the right staff for the near and further future.

Hector belongs in Group B unless you only watched his starts prior to the AS game.

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I agree, Heaney might already be the best in the rotation.

 

Heaney is fun to watch. How many 24 yearold starters have a 1.6 BB/9....not many.

Way to early to make Comparisons but remember that Sinkerballer with extremely good command that went on to win Cy Young awards ?

that guy was Roy Halladay.

 

Age 24 season from Roy Halladay: 105 IP, 2.1 BB/9, 8.2 K/9, 3.16 ERA. For majority of his career his K/9 was around 6.5 to 7.5 (only going over 8.0 twice)

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next year's rotation to start the season will almost certainly be: Richards, Santiago, Heaney, Wilson, Weaver/Shoemaker

I think it's a toss-up see who has the better spring between Shoe and Weaver, with Weaver getting the benefit of the doubt because of his vet status

obviously Skaggs and Tropeano are right there if any of those guys gets hurt (or it's obvious even in ST that Jered is completely toast)

Skaggs is going to get moved along very slowly. Maybe some starts in ST, but almost certain to start the season in AAA with a limit on his innings. If he's pitching great and the big club needs the help, I could see him coming up in May/June.

 

I'm not ready to call 2014 a fluke or career year for Richards. He didn't get a normal ST or start to this year, so I want to see what he does with a full training camp and ramp up to the season, more than a year removed from that injury. I still have hope that he's a legit ace in this league.

Edited by WallyWorld
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I'm not sure what to make of Shoe yet.

He can have multi-month periods of brilliance, and then the same of not-so-good.

He does rely heavily on the splitter, which does put more pressure on the arm/elbow.

Could a move to the pen in the next year or two be in the works?    

He could be downright dominating as either an 8th inning or 9th inning guy when the splitter is on.

 

Newcomb needs to work on the command.   The stuff is obviously there.    Sounds like someone we know well (Richards in the minors).

Edited by Angel Oracle
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Hector... I really don't want him here next year. Dude is unbearable to watch in his 5-6 innings with 150 pitches (exaggeration I know) I really hope we can trade him possibly for a 2B or in a package  with Shoe for a 2B?

 

The only "locks" for the rotation next year should be Heaney, Richards, and Weaver (unfortunately). The other 2 spots will be a dog fight. I really hope at least 1 spot is filled by a FA (Zimm, Shark, Price, Cueto etc.) See how CJ bounces back. Give him a short leash and if anything let him build up some trade value towards June. 

 

Ideally (and realistically), I want

 

FA

Heaney

Richards

CJ (short leash)

Weaver (roll with the punches)

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Hector... I really don't want him here next year. Dude is unbearable to watch in his 5-6 innings with 150 pitches (exaggeration I know) I really hope we can trade him possibly for a 2B or in a package  with Shoe for a 2B?

 

IMO two starting pitchers for a middle infielder is far too high of a price.

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IMO two starting pitchers for a middle infielder is far too high of a price.

 

I agree.  We are not that deep in starters to be casting them away like this.  There are plenty of question marks already with our starters.  In a worst case scenario Weaver could be done, Wilson may not fully recover, Skaggs may at least take another year of recovery to get to full strength, Heaney could hit a second year jinx, Richards may never fully recover to 2014 form, Santiago of the second half of 2015 could be more the norm, and Shoemaker could be spotty like 2015.  The rest are unproven rookies and prospects, no guarantees there.  And there is no ace in this group anymore, someone who can routinely stop losing streaks and is durable enough to complete a whole season at a high level.  The new GM should know how to pray.

Edited by tomsred
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In a worst case scenario Weaver could be done...

 

Far too few people are considering this possibility, IMO. Most of the discussion I see assumes that Weaver will either start the season in the bullpen or be back in the rotation. There is a distinct possibility that he will get to spring training and have absolutely nothing left. At this point his fastball is around the speed of most pitchers' changeups. That is not a recipe for consistently getting major league hitters out, whether it is as a starter or in relief. Pitchers can get by on guile to a certain point, but eventually the time comes when they have to deliver something that I am not sure that Weaver has left.

Edited by Vegas Halo Fan
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I'd be okay with Price, but Heyward should be the top target. Even if it means giving up a draft pick, not a lot of 26-year old free agents with his value. It's not like signing a Pujols or Hamilton, you're signing him for what you expect to get in return, not what they've done in their career. Heyward or bust.

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