LA Angels News

LA Angels The Good, The Bad, and The Second Half Preview

By David Peng
ANAHEIM, CA - MAY 10: Shohei Ohtani #17 shakes hands with Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim after defeating the Minnesota Twins 7-4 in a game at Angel Stadium on May 10, 2018 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
ANAHEIM, CA - MAY 10: Shohei Ohtani #17 shakes hands with Mike Trout #27 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim after defeating the Minnesota Twins 7-4 in a game at Angel Stadium on May 10, 2018 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images) /
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THE BULLPEN
The Good

The Minnesota Twins, in first place in the AL Central with 56 wins, picked up Cody Allen almost immediately after the Angels released him, which should tell you something: Across major league baseball, almost everyone hates their bullpen, because almost everyone’s bullpen is bad. That said, the Angels’ bullpen is… not GOOD, but it’s actually as bad as it feels. What it actually is is wildly inconsistent. Hansel Robles and Ty Buttrey have combined for 85 innings of strong late-inning relief, a 2.66 ERA with strong peripherals between them. Behind them, Cam Bedrosian, Justin Anderson and Noe Ramirez have been inconsistent but still above average. Underneath that trio is a gaggle of arms that has, for the most part, been more problem than solution

The Bad

The problem with “inconsistent but still above average” is that the Angels aren’t getting deep innings from their starters, which forces them to go to three and four relievers every night, which means they’re counting on three or four different inconsistent arms to consistently close games out. That is simply not working. Every night, one of thse relievers is probably going to have a bad night, and one weak link is all that’s needed to blow up a ballgame. It’s a league-wide problem, and the Angels are just one of 25 teams that haven’t been able to cobble together any late game stability.

The Expectation

More of the same, but worse. Without Tyler Skaggs stretching the rotation, it’s the bullpen that will be stretched even thinner than it has been. Keynan Middleton will be back in a week to bolster the pen, but there’s no one else the Angels can count on right now. Brad Ausmus has been using relievers as openers to good effect — Bedrosian in particular seems to work well in that spot, and maybe using him early more often instead of late might work out better for him and the team.

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