Pitching is a need the Los Angeles Angels have had for nearly a decade now. Outside of Shohei Ohtani, the Angels have failed to find frontline starting pitching and it's one of, if not the main reason the team hasn't made the postseason since 2014.
The Angels have had some solid individual seasons here and there from guys like Garrett Richards, Matt Shoemaker, and even Patrick Sandoval, but have yet to find a starting pitcher to perform at a high level for multiple years in a row outside of Ohtani. That's a problem.
With Shohei entering the free agency market and there being a pretty good chance he leaves, the Angels will undoubtedly be in the starting pitcher market. Some of the starting pitchers available would be great additions while others should be arms the Angels stay away from.
The LA Angels should stay far away from Blake Snell this offseason
Hot take? Probably. Blake Snell appears to be the Cy Young frontrunner in the National League and for good reason. He's had a phenominal year. Still, there're many red flags that would come about if the Angels signed him to the point where they should be staying away.
The southpaw has obviously had a fantastic year. He has a league-leading 2.33 ERA in 31 starts and 174 innings pitched. He leads the league with a 175 ERA+, is second in the majors in strikeouts, and has allowed just 5.7 H/9. All of that is great, but his 3.48 FIP indicates that there has been some luck involved.
While he's been striking batters out at an elite level, Snell also leads the league in walks. Walks don't mean much when they don't come around to score, but they do elevate his pitch count and the chances Snell allows fewer than six hits per nine next season are slim to none. Opponents have a .256 BAbip against him. Part of that is Snell being a good pitcher and executing pitches, but some of it is also clearly bad luck.
Even if Snell isn't the Cy Young caliber pitcher he has been this season he'd still be good, but would he be worth the price tag? Snell's price has elevated exponentially due to his great year when from 2019-2022 he was nothing more than a mid-rotation arm. Snell had a 3.85 ERA in 85 starts in that span, making more than 25 starts just once.
The Angels took a gamble by signing Tyler Anderson who was coming off a career year and that has failed in a big way. Giving Snell a longer and more expensive deal when he's had some injury concerns, will be 31 next season, and has yet to string two all-star caliber years together seems like a bad idea.