So far this year, the LA Angels starting pitchers have allowed more runs per start than any team besides that Boston Red Sox.
Most have considered the offense as the LA Angels weakness, and while that hasn’t been great, the rotation has been equally to blame. With a number of names returning from the Injured List in the coming weeks or months, there is some hope the rotation can become competent.
However, on Monday, the Angels were presented with the chance to completely change their season when one pitcher surprisingly became available.
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I’m not talking about an ace to trade for such as Madison Bumgarner or Corey Kluber. I’m not even talking about a player like Dallas Kuechel, who will cost tens of millions of dollars and force the team signing him to give up draft compensation.
No, I’m talking about Gio Gonzalez.
Over the winter, Gonzalez was one of the many who fell victim to MLB owners’ tight pockets, and ended up signing a minor league deal with the New York Yankees. That deal included a deadline for the team to add Gonzalez to their 25-man roster, otherwise he would become a free agent. Well, long story short, he’s available. And the Angels need to pounce.
While the Halos weren’t on the list of early candidates for the southpaw’s services, Billy Eppler has always worked quietly. Over the offseason, the Angels were never connected with any of their eventual signings until, well, they signed them.
One note to keep in mind here is that the team isn’t new to bringing in pitchers during the season. In 2016, Eppler and Co. brought in free agent Tim Lincecum to try to ease the team’s starting pitching woes.
While that signing didn’t end well, Gonzalez’s story could be much different. He is coming off a good season that included a phenomenal postseason. Gonzalez also isn’t going to need a team to break the bank for him, which should spark the Angels’ interest even more.
Needless to say, the Angels need as much starting pitching as they can get. While he would essentially be holding Griffin Canning’s rotation spot until the Halo’s top prospect is ready for the MLB, the team is already falling out of the postseason equation. They really can’t afford to continue trotting our subpar pitching, even if Canning and a handful or injured pitchers are on their way.
This team needs starting pitching, and it’s clear Gio Gonzalez can offer better (and cheaper) quality than anyone else the team could possibly add to the roster.