Angels re-sign veteran reliever

Jul 16, 2021; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Baltimore Orioles relief pitcher Cesar Valdez (62)
Jul 16, 2021; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Baltimore Orioles relief pitcher Cesar Valdez (62) / Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Angels have signed Cesar Valdez to a minor league deal. This is the second offseason in a row that the Angels have signed this veteran to a minor league deal.

Valdez made just one appearance for the Angels last season and allowed two runs (one earned) in one inning of work.

He's pitched for parts of six seasons with five different teams and has made 69 appearances. In those appearances, he's pitched to a 6.11 ERA which is obviously not great.

Angels sign another pitcher to MiLB deal

Valdez is the fourth pitcher the Angels have signed to a minor league deal in the last two weeks, joining Jacob Webb, Chris Devenski, and Jonathan Holder.

While Valdez has spent most of his time in the majors as a reliever, having just six career starts under his belt, he spent last season as a starter at AAA Salt Lake. He went 10-5 with a 3.94 ERA in 23 starts and 146.1 innings pitched. He could be joining the Angels in the spring as starting pitching depth which they could use after sending Janson Junk to the Brewers in the Hunter Renfroe deal.

While Valdez has not had much success at the big league level he actually did open the 2021 season as the Orioles' closer. In his first 13 games, he allowed just three runs (two earned) in 14.2 innings pitched, recording eight saves in 10 opportunities. He struggled mightily after that and ended up an Angel the following season.

Valdez is not like most pitchers. His fastball averaged 86.4 mph in 2022. He can reach the upper 80's with his fastball, that's about as hard as he throws. His best pitch is his changeup, as that pitch helped him get in the 99th percentile in chase rate in 2021 according to baseball savant.

This signing likely won't mean much as Valdez has an uphill battle just to make it to the show. But the 37-year-old can pitch in AAA and who knows, he might be needed for a relief appearance or a start at some point during the season.

These minor league signings mean close to nothing, and you should not be worried about them. Perry Minasian knows the Angels still need arms, particularly in the bullpen, and he will land them. I'm confident.

Next. What to expect from Hunter Renfroe. dark