The last five years have been frustrating ones for the Los Angeles Angels. Despite rostering Shohei Ohtani for that entire time, the team failed to make the playoffs a single time and even failed to put together a winning season.
A big reason for the Angels failures is their inability to succeed in the free agent market. They've had some successes in recent years bringing in guys like Matt Moore, Carlos Estevez, and Brandon Drury, but have had many more busts come to Anaheim.
5) Noah Syndergaard
A constant need for the Angels in recent memory has been starting pitching. They're consistently among the worst in the American League in starting pitching, and that's been the cause of their downfall for many years. With that in mind, the Angels brought in Noah Syndergaard to try and fortify their rotation ahead of the 2022 season.
Syndergaard had developed into one of baseball's best starting pitchers with the Mets but had made just two starts since 2019 prior to coming to Anaheim. The Angels gave him a one-year deal worth $21 million and also sacrificed a draft pick as Syndergaard received and rejected the Qualifying Offer.
The Angels hoped Syndergaard would put together a strong season in 2022 as the team attempted to push for the playoffs. The right-hander wasn't bad, but also didn't live up to the hype.
His 3.83 ERA in 15 starts wasn't so bad, but he clearly lost a ton of velocity and managed to strikeout just 7.2 batters per nine. He pitched like a fourth starter or so but the Angels paid him and gave up the qualifying offer pick to get a bit more out of him.
The best part of Syndergaard tenure was the trade the Angels made sending him to Philadelphia in the deal that got Mickey Moniak and Jadiel Sanchez to Anaheim. Not a horrible signing, especially because of the trade, but the Angels expected more.