Angels DFA reclamation project, place Chase Silseth on IL in massive roster shakeup

Early season injuries are particularly brutal, and sadly, the Angels' pitching staff is dealing with a couple of them.
Los Angeles Angels v Miami Marlins
Los Angeles Angels v Miami Marlins / Megan Briggs/GettyImages

It is unusual for any team, including the Los Angeles Angels, to make huge roster moves early in the season. Teams have the entire spring to hem and haw over who to carry and, more often than not, they stick with those rosters for a while to see how things shake out, even when the results are less than ideal.

The notable exception to that is when injuries pop up and, unfortunately, that is where the Angels find themselves on Monday. Chase Silseth was looking like he could be a success story for the Angels coming off a 2023 season that was marred by dealing with a concussion on a fluke play. After a strong spring which saw him post a 2.03 ERA across four appearances, hope ran wild. However, both of his regular season starts did not go overly well, and he mentioned after his last start on Sunday against Boston that he was working through some things.

Apparently, at least one of those things was some pain in his elbow, as the Angels made a series of roster moves Monday that included placing Silseth on the IL, along with Guillermo Zuniga, with both Carson Fulmer and Hunter Strickland getting recalled from the minors as corresponding moves.

LA Angels News: Angels make flurry of roster moves in the wake of multiple pitching injuries

Silseth hitting the injured list is the big news here, as his loss is a huge blow to an Angels' rotation that was thin heading into the 2024. We don't know the extent of Silseth's elbow injury beyond that he has elbow inflammation, but it is probably safe to assume that he will be out for more than a couple weeks based purely on the idea that the Angels are probably going to play things safe early on. Zuniga isn't a small blow, either. While his first few bullpen appearances have been hit and miss this year, LA's lack of bullpen depth makes losing anyone a concern. There were legitimately high hopes pinned to his powerful right arm after his arrival from St. Louis, too.

To make room on the 40-man roster, the Angels DFAed both Livan Soto and Zach Plesac. Soto was already a fringe roster inclusion even before LA's injury woes, and he wasn't seeing any playing time in the infield anyway. Plesac was in a similar position coming off being DFAed by the Guardians last year, as he also didn't make the Angels' big league roster out of camp; there is a decent chance he will clear waivers.

To fill out their roster, the Angels are going with Carson Fulmer and Hunter Strickland. Strickland had an excellent spring training and should really help fill the void in the bullpen. As for Fulmer, he is a former top 10 pick in the MLB Draft by the White Sox, but he never quite figured out how to stick in the rotation and has bounced around the league as a bullpen arm since 2020.

For the moment, these moves feel like short-term fixes to what is quickly becoming a larger roster problem. How well guys step up over the next couple of days is what will determine the Angels' next steps, if any.

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