9) LA Angels free agent target to pursue: Adam Ottavino
Adam Ottavino is in a similar boat to Robertson. He's an older reliever who looked like he was in decline to all of a sudden break out in a new situation and look like the reliever he once was.
Ottavino really struggled in the shortened 2020 season with the Yankees and wasn't great last season with Boston either.
In 2022 he signed a cheap one-year deal with the Mets. Boy did that pay off.
Ottavino went 6-3 with a 2.06 ERA in 66 appearances. He was the primary set-up man for a really good team.
The story of Ottavino's career has been great stuff but can't command it. Even in the seasons he struggled with the Yankees and Red Sox, Ottavino posted great strikeout numbers. The issue was he was walking 4.9 batters per nine in those seasons and allowing 8.4 H/9.
Ottavino found a way to still post elite strikeout numbers (10.8 K/9) but limit the walks (2.2 BB/9). Ottavino had his best season at limiting walks since 2014.
Ottavino was in the 99th percentile in average exit velocity and the 97th percentile in hard-hit rate. In addition, he was in the 89th percentile in K-rate according to baseball savant. Ottavino was striking guys out at an elite clip and when they did make contact, it wasn't hard hit.
Now relievers can be extremely volatile and I don't expect Ottavino or Robertson for that matter to be quite as good as they were, especially at their ages. Ottavino turns 37 in November. But, I do expect them to be very good in 2023 and Ottavino would be another example of a veteran the Angels can place in the back end of their bullpen and expect good things out of.