Who are the candidates for the Angels’ six-man rotation?
Angels Six-Man Rotation – Julio Teheran
While the Angels were certainly happy to get good news on the health of Shohei Ohtani and Griffin Canning, there is only so much the team can depend on them. Even if Ohtani has fully recovered from Tommy John surgery and stays healthy for all of 2020, he’s only expected to pitch once per week. Likewise, Canning ended 2019 on the injured list and was already shut down from throwing this spring due to “chronic changes” in his UCL. That still leaves two huge question marks in a rotation that has succumbed to too many in the past few seasons.
That is what makes the addition of former Braves starter Julio Teheran so important.
Signed as a free agent (one-year, $9 million) during the offseason, Teheran comes with perhaps the most important thing the Angels could have possibly asked for; a track record of health. Over the seven seasons that Teheran was a full-time starter, the right-hander has made 30 or more starts in each season and has averaged 191 innings per season since 2013. In contrast, the Angels have seen only nine pitchers throw enough innings to qualify for the ERA crown and only three of those have thrown more than 190 in a single campaign.
But Teheran is more than just an innings eater. Since 2013, he has averaged 11 wins, a 3.64 ERA, a 7.9 K/9 mark. While he doesn’t scream “ace material”, he ranked 44th during that span in pitcher fWAR (13.8), 43rd in ERA, and 25th in LOB% (76.1%). Long story short, Julio Teheran gets the job done and does it every fifth day consistently.
A free agent at the end of the year, Teheran has a lot riding on a short season and could use a strong run to increase his value on the open market next winter.