LA Angels Opening Day Roster taking shape
By David Rice
Starting Rotation –
The Angels 2019 starting rotation looks much different than the 2018 rotation. Gone is Garrett Richards and Matt Shoemaker as well as J..C. Ramirez who is still recovering from Tommy John surgery and he will not be back until mid-season.
In their place are Matt Harvey and Trevor Cahill who were both signed as free agents this Winter. Tyler Skaggs will be back in the rotation as the only player who was in the rotation when 2018 started. Felix Pena will be in the rotation to begin the season as a place he also ended the 2018 season.
Pena was fighting for the 5th spot in the rotation with Jaime Barria and when Andrew Heaney had shoulder inflamation that will land him on the injured list to begin the season, Pena was in the rotation.
Jaime Barria was the incumbent for the 5th starter spot in the rotation and had a mediocre Spring with a 4.97 ERA and 1.58 WHIP in 12.2 innings pitched. Barria still looked primed to be the fifth starter, but then Angels general manager Billy Eppler threw a curve ball trading reliever Williams Jerez to San Francisco in exchange for right-hander Chris Stratton who will now assume the 5th starter spot.
Andrew Heaney will also join the rotation in the next few weeks, the question will be which pitcher will get bumped out when that happens. Stratton or Pena could then fill in the role as a long-man in the bullpen. We will see how things play out.