The LA Angels should stay far away from James Paxton this offseason
The Boston Red Sox remained in the Wild Card race for as long as they did partially because James Paxton emerged as a really solid starting pitcher for them. Boston had one of the worst rotations in baseball early on, but Paxton's return really steadied things. Paxton pitching well was surprising mainly because he didn't pitch at all in 2022 and had made just six starts since 2019.
Injuries have been the big issue for Paxton who, when healthy, has always been effective. Paxton has a 4.50 ERA through 19 starts this season, but that mark was at 3.36 through his first 15 starts. He's had four rough outings in a row to really spike the ERA.
While I think Paxton can be good when healthy, he simply hasn't proven he can stay healthy. He's made more than 25 starts just twice in 11 years and does not have a single season in which he has qualified for the ERA title.
Paxton would want a deal where he had a spot in a rotation guaranteed, and the Angels simply don't have the depth necessary to account for Paxton likely missing time on the IL. Getting guys they know can take the ball should be a priority, especially seeing how badly they've been bit by the injury bug.