The Los Angeles Angels have worked hard to address their pitching needs during the offseason, before the lockout.
They signed Noah Syndergaard, Michael Lorenzen and Aaron Loup.
It’s a great start, but more help is needed, both from the pitching department and from position players.
These three players are still available and fit the list.
3. Trevor Story
Right now, the Angels’ shortstop depth chart shows Tyler Wade and Luis Rengifo at the top.
Wade was recently designated for assignment by the New York Yankees.
Realistically, the Angels shouldn’t open the season with either of those names as a starter.
That would mean that they need to enter the commercial market or sign one of the two clear improvements that remain in the market: Trevor Story or Carlos Correa.
Correa may be out of your price range, but Story is still a possibility.
He’s a solid shortstop who’s good with the bat, with the glove, and with his legs.
It could help stabilize the frame and provide another right-handed weapon to the lineup.
He has a .272 / .340 / .523 batting line and is capable of hitting 30 home runs and stealing 20 bases per season with a solid defense in a prime position.
He should have a bigger contract than Javier Báez, so we are talking about a minimum of $ 140 million or $ 150 million.
But it’s something the Angels must do to keep up in the tough American League West.
– Kobe-Wan Kenobi (@ Frobe8Mamba24) December 15, 2021
2. Andrew Chafin
The Angels still have various needs, but despite their signing of Loup, the bullpen is perhaps the most urgent.
Simply put, there aren’t many reliable arms in the Angels’ bullpen.
Andrew Chafin is one of the best relievers available and proved his worth in both leagues in 2021.
He started the year with the Chicago Cubs, with whom he pitched 39.1 innings with a 2.06 ERA.
Then he was traded to the Oakland Athletics near the deadline and was even better, posting a 1.53 ERA in 29.1 frames.
Overall, he had a 1.83 ERA between the two teams.
His 3.30 career ERA certifies his status as a solid relief arm, and he’s left-handed, which is a nice advantage for every bullpen.
Chafin is a solid arm who would be a great fit for what the Angels are trying to do.
He is needed there to help protect the late tracks, something that was a problem last season.
1. Carlos Rodon
At the moment, the Angels’ rotation is headed by Shohei Ohtani, and also features Syndergaard, Patrick Sandoval, Jose Suarez, Lorenzen and Reid Detmers.
The group is strong, but a more established young starter with advantages would take it to top-10 status.
For years, the Angels’ problem has been pitching, and if they try to reverse the situation, they should go all out and bring in the best starter available.
Unless they can get Clayton Kershaw away from the Los Angeles Dodgers, that pitcher is Carlos Rodon.
The former Chicago White Sox pitcher would have been a legitimate AL Cy Young candidate with enough innings.
Injuries limited him to 132.2 innings, but he had an impressive 2.37 ERA thanks to his career-high speed down the fastball that unblocked many strikeouts and helped reduce his walks.
Both his strikeout rate of 34.6 percent and his walking rate of 6.7 percent were the best of his career.
– Matthew VanZandt (@VanzandtMatthew) December 25, 2021
Signing Rodon would help the Angels become serious contenders in the AL West, if they haven’t already.