Sign in to follow this  
AngelsWin.com

OC Register: Angels 2020 spring training preview: Did they get enough pitching over the winter?

Recommended Posts

TEMPE, Ariz. — Pitchers and catchers are set to report for spring training on Tuesday, although they won’t quite be the pitchers that many Angels fans had hoped to see.

A winter that many fans will view as a disappointment has come to an end, with the Angels opening camp without having added the premium pitching they had hoped to acquire.

Gerrit Cole, an Orange County native and arguably the best pitcher in the majors, spurned an eight-year offer from the Angels to accept $324 million over nine years from the New York Yankees.

The Angels also went after free agents Stephen Strasburg and Zack Wheeler and they tried to make trades for Corey Kluber, Mike Clevinger, Matthew Boyd and Ross Stripling.

The loss of Stripling might have been the most frustrating for many because the Angels reportedly had agreed to acquire him and slugger Joc Pederson in a deal with the Dodgers last week, but it still hasn’t happened and there are reports that the deal is off.

Certainly, there were plenty of other pitchers they pursued who ended up being unavailable, or who ended up asking for more money than the Angels were willing to spend.

“We were definitely aggressive trying to get after other guys,” Manager Joe Maddon said last month. “It just didn’t work out for some people, but the guys we did get I’m really pleased with.”

They ended up with Dylan Bundy and Julio Teheran.

While they aren’t marquee names, they do both offer the Angels something they have sorely lacked in recent seasons: durability.

Bundy has started 89 games in the past three seasons for the Baltimore Orioles. Teheran is one of just four pitchers who has started at least 30 games each of the past seven years.

Also, Bundy, 27, and Teheran, 29, are still under 30, giving the Angels reason to hope that they can remain effective and durable enough to provide some bulk to their rotation.

The Angels can also hope that getting more innings out of their starters will ease the workload on the bullpen – one that could be anchored by Hansel Robles, Ty Buttrey and Keynan Middleton – to make an effective pitching staff.

And there is hope for the offense, which benefited from their biggest move of the offseason. The day after the Angels missed out on Cole, they spent $245 million on a seven-year deal for third baseman Anthony Rendon, the best position player on the free-agent market.

Bounce-back seasons from Justin Upton and Andrelton Simmons, and the addition of Jason Castro behind the plate, could be a boon to the offense.

While there is reason for optimism about the lineup and the bullpen, the big question as camp opens is whether the Angels have enough in the rotation?

Two weeks ago, Maddon wasn’t sure.

“We may,” he said. “I don’t know the guys I haven’t seen, the youngsters. We already might have enough pitching. I don’t know that. From a distance, without having seen some of these guys, you’d like to have more. You always want more, but I’m curious to see the young arms that everybody likes because maybe we already do have enough pitching.”

One of those young pitchers is the subject of the most important of the questions the Angels face this spring:

HOW WILL SHOHEI OHTANI BE MANAGED ON THE MOUND?

The one pitcher the Angels have with the potential to be a front-line starter is Ohtani, but he hasn’t pitched a full season since 2016 in Japan. He is going to be on an innings limit this season, so the Angels are trying to figure out how to do that.

Will he just start his season later, perhaps having his pitching spring training in April and starting to pitch in games in May? A new rule would allow him to pitch in minor league games on a quasi-rehab assignment while still remaining part of the active major league roster.

The Angels are expected to chart a course for Ohtani early in spring training.

WHICH OTHER YOUNG PITCHERS WILL TAKE A STEP FORWARD?

Griffin Canning, Patrick Sandoval, José Suarez and Jaime Barría all pitched last season at age 23 or younger. All made their debuts last year except for Barría, who was a revelation as a rookie in 2018.

Canning, a former second-round pick who was the Angels’ top pitching prospect, is in a different class than the other three. He is a virtual lock to be a part of the rotation, although it remains to be seen how good he will be.

The other three have each flown flashes of the potential to be solid big-league starters, but not the consistency.

Spring training could start to show the clues as to which of those pitchers, if any, will emerge to bolster the rotation.

WHO IS ON FIRST?

Albert Pujols just turned 40, but he still goes into camp at the top of the Angels’ depth chart at first base, particularly with Ohtani likely to take a large chunk of the DH starts. Pujols played 98 games at first last year, and he got through the season healthy. It allowed him to have an offseason with any sort of limitations for the first time since 2014-15.

It will be interesting to see how Pujols looks in the spring, and what type of workload the Angels expect from him.

And it will also be interesting to see who gets the first base starts that he doesn’t. The Angels will probably have either Matt Thaiss or Jered Walsh on the roster, but there are questions as to whether either is a big-league hitter yet. The Angels are also expected to experiment with Tommy La Stella at first. He’s only played 5-1/3 innings at first in the majors, but if he can handle the position, he’d be an ideal platoon partner with Pujols.

IS JO ADELL READY?

For much of the past week, when the Angels seemed to be getting Pederson from the Dodgers, the bar for Adell to reach the majors got higher. When the Pederson deal didn’t happen, that bar was again lowered.

As it stands now, when Adell is considered a better option than Brian Goodwin, he will be the Angels’ right fielder.

Last spring the Angels didn’t get much of a look at Adell before he got hurt early in camp. This time around, he figures to get plenty of action and even a chance to win his way into the Opening Day lineup.

Most likely, though, the Angels will start him out at Triple-A, a level at which he struggled in his 27 games last summer.

HOW ABOUT THEIR NEW MANAGEMENT?

After successful stints managing the Tampa Bay Rays and Chicago Cubs, Maddon is back to manage the Angels. He’s in an organization where he spent decades as a minor league player, minor league coach and major-league coach.

Maddon figures to bring a much different atmosphere than Brad Ausmus last year, and even different from Mike Scioscia for the 19 years before that.

The Angels will also have their third pitching coach in the past three seasons, this time with Mickey Callaway taking over. Callaway spent five successful years as the pitching coach for the Cleveland Indians before his two-year stint as the New York Mets’ manager. He will likely bring a much more traditional approach than Doug White did in his one season leading the pitching staff.

View the full article

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bundy and Teheran will have no more productivity than Harvey, Cahill or Stratton had. Acquiring Ross Stripling would've been huge. Ohtani is a complete unknown? Heaney & Canning are inconsistent. Another season without a bonafide #1.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 hours ago, cvdog said:

Bundy and Teheran will have no more productivity than Harvey, Cahill or Stratton had.

This is the 2nd dumbest post of 2020.

Congrats. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, tdawg87 said:

homer simpson party GIF

.

.

17 hours ago, cvdog said:

Yes he did. All he had to do was butt out and let Eppler wait 1 more day. If I'm Mike Trout I'm so done with these fools.

 

1 hour ago, Lou said:

This has now taken the lead as dumbest post of 2020.

Congrats. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

to answer the question - did the Angels acquire enough pitching over the winter?

NO.

Halos realty don't have a MLB rotation to start the season.

the guys they obtained follow the Cahill, Harvey etc. route of acquiring question marks and hope they pan out.

I think we win 83 games (how many years in a row have we been under ,500 - I'll check it ) but miss the playoffs,

we are going to be in a lot of 9-7 type games this year - a true AL team.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

HALOS have had sub .500 seasons for the past four years - 

last winning record season was 2015.

Halos have drawn THREE MILLION fans or more every year since 2003 -- 16 straight seasons --

Three Million fans a year, win, lose or draw - FOUR straight sub .500 seasons -- do the math -- not a lot of incentive to improve.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, disarcina said:

HALOS have had sub .500 seasons for the past four years - 

last winning record season was 2015.

Halos have drawn THREE MILLION fans or more every year since 2003 -- 16 straight seasons --

Three Million fans a year, win, lose or draw - FOUR straight sub .500 seasons -- do the math -- not a lot of incentive to improve.

 

 

Paid attendance stats coming from the Angels are probably as trustworthy as official government coronavirus stats coming out of China. There are 15,000 people at each game. Who are the millions of people buying tickets and not showing up every year?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Vladdylonglegs -- hard to argue / dispute your statement -- just today was discussing going to some games this year and we have some relatives visiting us in September -- so the issue of getting tickets now or waiting came up. May comment -- based on the past several seasons, getting tickets to a Halos game in September - even on a game day walk up basis -- should NOT be difficult.

And , YES, the attendance listed for MLB games are almost certainly FUZZY MATH at best and outright fraudulent at worst.....but they do tabulte TICKETS SOLD.

Where I think things really go off the rails is where the team releases tickets at the last minute to ticket brokers at the last minute (probably at drastically reduced prices or maybe just dump them) and count those as 'tickets sold'

that results in what we all see (and not just in Anaheim) onTV -- an announced attendance of 30,000 to 40,000 and TV shots of entire empty sections -- even right behind the plate and in the good box seats along first and third. It can be really embarrassing -- I remember watching games last year thinking that,

the late great Chick Hearn (LAKERS announcer) used to have a great line for this situation :  "announced crowd of 25,178 tonight, if that's the case, there's a lot a fans who came to game dressed up as empty seats......."

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pitching is definitely better, but not what I want it to be.

I think it’s kind of funny that some people can’t admit the pitching is better at all because we didn’t get Cole.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this