The Angels could turn to an old friend of Joe Maddon to add some bullpen help for the remainder of the 2020 season.
The Los Angeles Angels could definitely use some bullpen help. Luckily for them, a veteran reliever may find himself on the market soon.
On Wednesday, the Cincinnati Reds designated right-hander Pedro Strop for assignment, a move required when the team called up shortstop prospect Jose Garcia. The Reds now 10 days to either waive, trade, or release Strop.
Depending on what the Reds choose to do, he could be a serviceable arm out of the bullpen, especially for one as beleaguered as the Angels. The Halos currently sports a 4.52 ERA, a 65.1% strand-rate, and have surrendered the 4th highest hard-hit rate in the league at 45.7%.
Now 36-years-old, Strop is no longer a young pup. However, over a 12-year career, he owns a lifetime ERA of 3.22, an FIP of 3.41, a 9.8 K/9, and a tight 27.8% hard-hit rate.
Strop does come with his own concerns, namely in the health department as he’s been on the injured list with a groin strain since August 11th. However, he’s been facing live hitters at the team’s alternate training site and appeared close to returning before he was designated.
For an Angels team desperate for help, turning to Strop as yet another reclamation project could prove to be a worthwhile gamble. He has the track record of past success in the bullpen and would cost next to nothing for the remainder of the season.
There is also a certain familiarity to weigh here. Prior to his time with the Reds in 2020, Strop spent his previous seven seasons with the Chicago Cubs. The final five of those seasons, he worked as a crucial, late-inning arm for none other than current Angels skipper Joe Maddon.
Maddon has seemingly spent the entire season searching for someone he trusts to the point he did Strop for half of a decade. The bullpen has been juggled non-stop while the Angels look for some consistency in the ranks. Perhaps adding an outside arm could stabilize at least one role at the back-end of games.