Angels Re-Sign Vinnie Pestano, Avoid Arbitration

By Brian Helberg

Mike DiGiovanna of the LA Times is reporting that the Angels have avoided arbitration with Vinnie Pestano by agreeing to a one-year deal worth 1.15 million dollars. The Angels dealt for the veteran reliever this past August from the Cleveland Indians. Pestano was a fan favorite in Cleveland, but had fallen out of favor amongst the coaching staff.

Pestano had a very promising start to his career with the Indians, posting an ERA of 2.69 over his first 137 innings. He tallied 4.5 wins above replacement between 2010 and 2012. His last season and a half with the Indians did not go as planned. After a rough 2013 season that saw him his ERA balloon to 4.08, Pestano spent the first half of 2014 bouncing between Cleveland and their Triple-A affiliate, the Columbus Clippers.

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Pestano welcomed the change of scenery, and seemed reinvigorated after the Angels acquired the 29-year-old on August 7th. In 9.2 innings of work with the Halos, Pestano posted an ERA of 0.93 and recorded 13 strikeouts. Granted it was a small sample size, but he really looked to be regaining the confidence he exhibited early in his career in Cleveland. Vinnie posted a positive WAR as a member of the Angels for the first time since posting a 2.3 WAR for the Indians in 2012.

Angels’ general manager, Jerry Dipoto, continues to take care of business this offseason. After making two subtle trades last week, that brought three new Angels to Anaheim, Dipoto has now checked another item off his shopping list. By paying Pestano now, Dipoto has avoided the lengthy process of arbitration. This allows the Halos to focus on the GM winter meetings that officially kicked off today in Phoenix, Arizona.

If Pestano can put together a decent spring in Tempe, he will likely be heading west as a member of the Angels bullpen on opening day. I expect Pestano to continue his resurgence in 2015, and earn many more appearances for the Halos next summer.