One of the later moves the Los Angeles Angels made this past offseason was bringing in Brandon Drury on a two-year deal. This was an exciting signing because not only were the Angels adding some much-needed infield depth and versatility, but they were also adding a player who wanted to be here.
Drury passed on more money elsewhere and chose to come to Anaheim because he grew up a fan of the team. Having players on the team who you can tell want to be here makes them more fun to root for in general.
The veteran entered the season on the good side of Angels fans and he just added onto that with a productive year.
Brandon Drury deserves an A- Grade for his 2023 season
For most of this season, this Angels lineup was riddled with both injuries and inconsistency. Brandon Drury was no exception as he missed over a month with an injury, but when healthy, he was everything the Angels could've hoped for.
The journeyman infielder was nothing more than a bench bat before breaking out in 2022 with the Reds. His performance earned him a Silver Slugger Award and the two-year deal with the Angels. He wound up justifying it in year one by slashing .262/.306/.497 with 26 home runs and 83 RBI in 125 games.
Drury showed that his breakout season was no fluke by arguably performing at a higher level considering how much easier it is to hit in Cincinnati than it is in Anaheim. He was second on the Angels in home runs, RBI, runs, doubles, and at-bats. Had it not been for Shohei Ohtani, Drury would've been the best position player on the Angels this season.
In addition to some solid counting stats, Drury was also one of, if not the best Angels hitter with runners in scoring position. The team as a whole failed miserably in those big spots, but Drury had a flare for the dramatic by slashing .281/.329/.537 with runners in scoring position. He had an .866 OPS in those spots and was even better with two outs and RISP, posting a .912 OPS.
Not only did he show up with the bat, but Drury ranked in the 90th percentile in Outs Above Average according to baseball savant. He was a crucial all-around player for this Angels team and was a huge reason the team remained afloat as long as they did.
The Angels can enter the 2024 season knowing the right side of their infielder is taken care of very nicely with Drury at second and Nolan Schanuel at first.