The Angels look to bolster their pitching staff with a guy with loads of potential.
According to multiple national news sources, the Angels have agreed to terms on a minor league deal with right-handed pitcher Jacob Faria. The deal includes an invitation to major league spring training in a few months.
Faria, 27, was once one of the top prospects in a Tampa Bay Rays system that was stacked on pitching prospects. The right-hander was fantastic in his short rookie cameo, posting a 3.43 ERA across 86 2/3 innings in 2017. He dealt with injuries in 2018, managing just 65 innings of work to the tune of a less desirable 5.40 ERA. In 2018, the Tampa Bay Rays improved a great deal and with it, had their hand forced to move Faria to the bullpen.
In 2019, Faria was shipped off to the Milwaukee Brewers where he was a full-time reliever. Faria’s walk rate jumped a ton, but his strikeout rate improved a great deal as well. Overall, the numbers are not great, but he does have a lot to be tweaked that could develop him to what was his full potential. His split-change is a unique pitch that generates a ridiculous amount of whiffs. His fastball is sub-standard in comparison to the rest of the league. A tweak that emphasizes his off-speed stuff and de-emphasizes his fastball could work out for him long-term and revert him back to having potential as a major league starter.
This is a good move on the Angels’ part as they are going after someone who has genuine potential and little mileage on his arm. I recently wrote a piece that stated that the Angels should look at these exact signings as a way to bolster the roster as opposed to signing old veterans to bad contracts. Who knows, Faria could be the 2021 version of Dylan Bundy.
The Angels figure to have limited starting pitching depth in 2021 and this is a good situation to enter into for both parties. Faria is an Orange County local as well, so it’s likely a good situation for him mentally as he gets to be closer to home.
All in all, the Angels are getting someone who could make a serious impact this season if all breaks right.