Breaking down the LA Angels bullpen for 2018

ANAHEIM, CA - AUGUST 26: Relief pitcher Blake Parker
ANAHEIM, CA - AUGUST 26: Relief pitcher Blake Parker /

The LA Angels bullpen was a bright spot in the 2017.  The first half of the season the Angels bullpen was ranked third in the majors.  It did fall off somewhat in the second half of the season, but overall it was a good year for the Angels pen.

So the question is how will the 2018 LA Angels bullpen shape up.  Some pitchers are no longer on the Angel roster so some new people will need to step up in new roles.  So let’s breakdown the potential pitchers that will fill the Angels bullpen.

The pitchers that played key roles in the Angels bullpen in 2017 were Blake Parker, Cam Bedrosian, Jose Alvarez, Eduardo Paredes, Noe Ramirez, and Keynan Middleton.  Will this be enough to form a successful bullpen in 2018?

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The biggest question for 2018 is who will be the closer when the season starts in April.  The most likely candidates in-house at least would be Cam Bedrosian or Keynan Middleton.  A longshot would be Blake Parker.  All three relievers closed games in 2017, but my money would be on Cam Bedrosian getting the first shot, but it will probably be a battle royale come Spring Training.

The other option is the Angels could attempt to get a closer through free agency.  Potential candidates include guys like Addison Reed, Steve Cishek, Luke Gregerson, Greg Holland, Wade Davis, and Glen Perkins all of which have been closers.  Some lower cost guys who could be closers Koji Uehara, Jason Motte, and Brandon Morrow could also be potential targets for the Angels to shore up the back end of the bullpen.

The Angels could also choose to re-sign Yusmeiro Petit and Bud Norris who both did a great job last season for the most part and move J.C. Ramirez back to the bullpen.

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The only lefty specialist the Angels have is Jose Alvarez and his effectiveness has been sporadic over the past two seasons.  So the Angels could pursue a guy like Tony Watson as well.

So let’s say the Angels use Cam Bedrosian as their closer with Blake Parker being the set-up man with Keynan Middleton pitching the 7th inning.  Noe Ramirez and Eduardo Paredes should also be in the bullpen mix with Jose Alvarez as the lefty specialist.

Next: What would do if you were the Angels GM?

Will the Angels stand pat with their bullpen or make some moves to bolster it?  That will  be a question Billy Eppler will have to answer.  I hope the Angels do make some moves to bolster the bullpen. Let’s see what happens.