As we all know, the LA Angels missed out on the two true aces – Gerrit Cole and Stephen Strasburg – in free agency, making Andrew Heaney one of the most pivotal Halos going into 2020.
With the LA Angels addition of Anthony Rendon, there is legitimate pressure to win next season. The rotation will be under more scrutiny than ever, as the offense is set to put up huge numbers. The most pivotal pitcher, as of now, for the Angels is Andrew Heaney.
Last season, we saw a stretch of games from Heaney where he was truly an elite pitcher. He was dominating outing after outing, and appeared to had found his groove. However, the rest of the season was a wash for Heaney, as he ended the year with a 4.91 ERA despite his impressive stretch.
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Going into 2020, the Angels need the elite version of Andrew Heaney, but this time they need it throughout the entire season.
Here’s the two possible scenarios:
1.) Andrew Heaney is his normal, inconsistent self. He is a liability on the mound at times and leaves the Angels with just Shohei Ohtani and whichever free agent starter they wind up signing as reliable options in a potential playoff series.
2.) Andrew Heaney makes the leap we’ve all been waiting for, giving the Angels a dynamic trio of Ohtani, Heaney, and the aforementioned free agent starter.
There’s an obvious difference in these two situations. In the first, the Angels would still need to address the rotation if they hope to contend in the playoffs. In the second, they have the three exceptional starting pitchers required to win in the postseason.
This is the case for Heaney being the Angels’ most pivotal player in 2020. We know the offense is going to be elite as long as they stay healthy. The bullpen isn’t the best in the MLB, but the combination of Cam Bedrosian, Keynan Middleton, Ty Buttrey, and Hansel Robles will get the job done when it matters.
The team’s only question resides in the rotation, where they need to find out who the top options in their rotation are. Ohtani is one. Another will very likely be a free agent.
And if the Angels want any chance of contention in 2020, Andrew Heaney needs to be the third.