The LA Angels may have the chance at something great this offseason. They’ve already gotten their big bat in Justin Upton, but they could also bring an ace, one who is already familiar with Southern California.
The LA Angels should be ready to pounce on Yu Darvish. Darvish is arguably the most talented pitcher available this offseason. His time spent with the Los Angeles Dodgers in the homestretch of the regular season was some of the best baseball he’s ever played.
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Darvish made nine starts for the Dodgers in the 2017 regular season. He owned a 3.44 ERA over 49.2 innings and struck out a phenomenal 11.1 batters per nine innings. While he did give up seven home runs in that span, three of them came in one game. Darvish showed he can still command batters and dominate games.
As most baseball fans know, Darvish absolutely blew it in the World Series. He failed to get out of the second inning in both his starts, allowing nine runs (eight earned) in 3.1 innings pitched. Both of his starts led to losses, including the deciding Game 7 loss at home.
This has brought Darvish’s value down. All of the sudden, there’s a lot of negotiation tools. He had a poor showing in the World Series. He’s on the wrong side of 30. Two years removed from Tommy John surgery along with fighting off back issues this season. His price tag is at an all-time low, and the Angels have to take notice.
Another aspect of this is the potential free agency of Japanese superstar Shohei Otani. Otani has the pitching to make it in the big leagues, but also has desires to serve as a designated hitter, which he has proved capable of in Japan. Darvish is a fellow Japanese ballplayer, so the idea of a possible dynamic duo could lure Otani to Anaheim as well.
Bringing Darvish in on a three or four-year deal, with an average salary of $18 million seems like a deal both sides could agree on. For years Darvish has been a Halo killer. This offseason, they should make him part of the team.