LA Angels 2021 spring training guide: predicting the starting rotation

Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles Angels (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)
Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles Angels (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images) /
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Los Angeles Angels
Jose Quintana (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

Both can make their case to be the team’s ace this spring, but I’d predict Jose Quintana as the No.2 and Dylan Bundy as the Halos No.1 starter.

Jose Quintana LHP

In his first five seasons with the White Sox, Quintana was one of the most consistent starters in the league. The lefty averaged at least 200 innings pitched and a low-3 ERA from 2013-2016. Quintana is also the only Angels pitcher to have surpassed 200 innings in their career.

Since being traded to the Cubs during the 2017 season, Quintana has been on a bit of a decline in his production. An early hand injury limited Quintana to just four games and one start last summer.

Jose Quintana Last 4 seasons:

  • 2017: (32 starts) 4.15 ERA 188.2 IP 1.224 WHIP
  • 2018: (32 starts) 4.03 ERA 174.1 1.319 WHIP
  • 2019: (32 games, 31 starts) 4.68 ERA 171 IP 1.386 WHIP
  • 2020: (4 games, 1 starts) 4.50 ERA 10 IP 1.300 WHIP

I feel like the most overused word of this article has been ‘if’, but if Quintana can pitch a full-season, the Angels can expect a lot of innings.

The 32-year old won’t shut out teams consistently, but the Angels will get their shot to win ballgames when he’s on the mound.

The two starting pitchers the Angels can heavily rely on for the 2021 season will be Jose Quintana and Dylan Bundy.

Dylan Bundy RHP

I think all signs point to Dylan Bundy taking the hill on Opening Day. The right-hander was the Angels best pitcher and took a career leap forward in 2020.

Dylan Bundy Last 3 Seasons:

  • 2018: (31 starts) 5.45 ERA 171.2 IP 1.410 WHIP
  • 2019: (30 starts) 4.79 ERA 161.2 IP 1.355 WHIP
  • 2020: (11 starts) 65.2 IP 3.29 ERA 1.036 WHIP

The biggest question around Bundy will be whether or not he can sustain the success we saw in his first season in Anaheim. I’m willing to bet he can.

The 28-year old agreed to a $8.325 million deal in his final year of arbitration. There have been no talks of an extension, but the asking price of Bundy will sky rocket with other teams bidding next offseason. This is assuming he performs well in 2021.

For Bundy to reach the next level in his career, he will need to become the starter who the Angels will rely on to end losing streaks, and give the belief that the team has a chance to win every time he takes the mound.

Next. Top 5 Angels prospects to watch in spring training

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Maybe the Angels will add more players to compete for spots in the rotation, but as it stands this will be the group we can expect in 2021.

We’ll know early on in the regular season if these starters will be enough to keep the Halos in the playoff race.