With about two weeks of spring training games remaining, it doesn’t appear Angels general manager Perry Minasian will make any notable additions to the current roster. The Halos revamped bullpen is arguably an elite arm away from being one of the best in baseball. There are still a few candidates on the market but do not expect Roberto Osuna to be on the Angels wishlist.
The right-hander threw a bullpen session on March 12, but there are no reports as to whether or not the Halos were one of the teams in attendance.
Osuna was limited to just four games last summer after an elbow injury. The right-hander was recommended for Tommy John surgery but opted to rehab without it. When he’s been on the field, Osuna has been one of the most dominant relievers in baseball. Since making his big league debut in 2015, Osuna boasts a 2.74 ERA and MLB’s third-best WHIP (0.905) and third-best strikeout-to-walk ratio (6.33).
The OC Register’s Jeff Fletcher says he would be ‘very surprised’ if the Angels signed Osuna. Earlier this offseason, the Halos were rumored to be one of the teams interested, but Fletcher reported there was ‘no chance.’
As well as he’s pitched in his career, the 26-year-old has also had off-the-field issues. Osuna was linked to domestic violence allegations in 2018, resulting in a 75-game suspension. He was never proven guilty, and the criminal charges were dropped, but it’s something that will always be around.
Currently, the Angels are in a tough situation with pitching coach Mickey Callaway after he was tied to sexual harassment allegations in February. The investigation remains ongoing with Callaway currently suspended. The latest update in the reports do not bode well for Callaway or his former ballclubs. So far, the Angels have not been linked to having any knowledge of the incidents prior to Callaway’s hiring, or during his time in Anaheim.
There are no official reports to Callaway as the reasoning, but I would speculate it is a factor when deciding whether or not to sign Osuna.
The Osuna-Angels rumor came about one week following the Callaway reports. Financially, the Halos can likely match what Osuna is looking for. The Angels currently have around $18.8 million remaining on their 2021 payroll before hitting the luxury tax penalty.
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Even if the Angels can afford Osuna, I wouldn’t bet on it, considering they don’t seem to be in a position to bring a player with this baggage to Anaheim. A big-market team like the Dodgers or Mets seem like the type of teams who would roll the dice if it betters their chances of competing for a World Series.
As well as he’s performed on the field, the Halos are in no rush to take this type of PR risk even if it improves the team’s chances of winning.