Angels Six-Man Rotation – Dylan Bundy
Never during the course of Dylan Bundy’s early years, from being a fourth overall pick in 2011 to being a top prospect in the Orioles system, did any pundit project that the right-hander would be slated for the back-end of the rotation at the MLB level.
Of course, no one foresaw Tommy John surgery for the one year after being drafted and then shoulder injuries stalling his rise. They didn’t see a drop in velocity and an ensuing issue with the long ball either.
The Angels are hoping that there is something left in the tank for the now 27-year-old Bundy, with a change in scenery perhaps being the key to unlocking his long-unresolved potential. The team certainly spent quite a bit to land him and his two years of contractual control.
In fairness to Bundy, it hasn’t been all bad news. In each of the last three seasons, he has taken 28 or more turns in the rotation. And despite playing on some incredibly bad Baltimore teams during that span, he’s posted a record of 38-45 in the process. Strikeouts have always been a strong point, with Bundy averaging 8.9 over the last three seasons. However, he’s also given up home runs at a clip of 1.7 per nine innings, including leading the league by surrendering 41 in 2018.
Like Heaney, Bundy could be facing a “prove it” year. With one final turn at arbitration after this season, the right-hander will need a strong 2020 to avoid being non-tendered following the season. However, if he can find at least a semblance of what made him such an enticing prospect many years ago, the Angels could find a piece for both this season and next.