What’s Wrong With Jered Weaver?

By Anthony Laughlin

Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Jered Weaver has been the Los Angeles Angels’ ace for the past several seasons. His best season came in 2012 when he posted a record of 20-5, sporting a solid 2.81 ERA. Last season, Weaver left the game versus Texas on April 6 with a broken left elbow. Since, Weaver hasn’t seemed like the same pitcher, especially in 2014 where he has posted a mediocre 7-6 record with a respectable 3.67 ERA.

 During Weaver’s starts this season, there has been a severe increase in home runs allowed; giving up a whopping 14. This includes giving up at least one home run in each of his last seven starts. In his Cy Young runner-up season, the right-hander only surrendered 20.

More from LA Angels News

Weaver has always been hard on himself, especially when he does poorly, so one would wonder if the anger backfires and causes him to make a few bad pitches. Despite giving up the high home run rate, Weaver manages to keep his team in the game, even if his offense always seems to let him down.

The right-hander has never been known for giving up many runs. In starts between April 18-May 21 he only gave up nine earned runs in 53 2/3 innings. Since May 21, he has given up 18 earned runs in 29.1 innings. It appears as if many hitters around the game are figuring out Weaver, and are jumping on him early. This, in turn, gets him into a lot of trouble.

 An aspect that continues to plague Weaver is the total lack of run support. He is one of the lowest supported pitchers in baseball, only receiving about 4.6 runs per game, with the highest going to Cincinnati’s Homer Bailey, who gets an average of 6.9. Without support from his offense, pressure is added not to make a mistake. However, with an increase in homers allowed, one mistake proves to be costly. 

The Angels came into the 2014 season heavily criticized for a weak starting pitching staff. They have surprised pundits by keeping the Angels towards the top of the AL West. To continue this success they will need all their starters, especially Weaver, to pitch well once the dog days of summer come around.

Weaver is struggling, but definitely has the experience and the ability to return to his best, much like Angel fans saw in 2011 and 2012.