LA Angels: The case for and against extending Alex Cobb
Why the LA Angels should extend Alex Cobb:
There’s undeniably a good argument to be made for why the LA Angels should keep Alex Cobb around.
After he survived the trade deadline, many saw this as a sign that the organization would re-sign the 33-year-old through 2022 and beyond.
Though he got off to a slow start in April, owning an ugly 7.16 ERA in four starts, Cobb hunkered down and became arguably the most reliable starter on the Angels.
In 11 starts since then, he’s put up an excellent 2.93 ERA, second to only Shohei Ohtani for the best on the team in that span.
His 3.82 ERA on the whole season is also the third best on the team (minimum 10 starts).
Even more impressive are his 3.19 xFIP and 3.65 SIERA, both of which are the best on the team. Likewise, opposing batters are slashing a mere .244/.310/.332 against him, despite a .327 BABIP supposedly working in their favor.
Cobb owes much of this success to his effective splitter and curveball combo.
Debatably his best pitch, Cobb’s splitter is generating a 36% whiff rate in 2021, mostly due to impressive marks in vertical movement (32.3 inches) and horizontal movement (13.8 inches).
As for his curveball, it’s currently averaging a solid spin rate of 2580 rpm. The results are an eye popping 51.8 inches of vertical break and a 32% whiff rate.
If Cobb can further refine both of these pitches while also getting some more help from the defense next year, he might just top his 2021 performance.