Angels sign another veteran reliever

Aug 23, 2022; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks relief pitcher Chris Devenski (32)
Aug 23, 2022; Kansas City, Missouri, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks relief pitcher Chris Devenski (32) / Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Angels continue to add pitching depth, as they signed Chris Devenski to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training.

Last week they signed Jacob Webb to a minor league deal, and now they've added another arm on a no-risk deal.

The SoCal native was an important reliever for the first couple of years of this Astros dynasty and was particularly great in his all-star season in 2017. He had a 2.68 ERA in 62 appearances that season, striking out 100 batters in 80.2 innings pitched and posting a 153 ERA+.

Since that season, he's struggled at the big league level and has especially struggled the last couple of years.

The Angels hope Devenski can recapture his old form.

Chris Devenski has really struggled since 2019, posting a 6.08 ERA in 86 appearances with the Astros, Diamondbacks, and most recently, the Phillies. He had an 8.59 ERA in 13 appearances this season.

Why does the 32-year-old keep getting chances when he's shown nothing in recent memory? The answer is simple. His changeup is still an elite pitch.

Devenski's best pitch his entire career has been his wicked changeup. In his limited action this season, opponents did hit .259 against that pitch but had a .197 xBA, suggesting he hit into some rough luck. Opponents also had a 37% whiff rate against that pitch.

With those kinds of results against this pitch, Devenski is showing he still has something. Whether it'll result in anything good remains to be seen, but this is a move with absolutely zero risk.

Devenski signed a minor league deal which means he'll be in Spring Training competing for a bullpen spot. If he pitches well, it's very possible he'll end up with one. If he doesn't, he'll either remain in the minors or be released.

The Angels are adding depth in a spot where they really don't have much of it. They have some young arms, but who knows how ready they are for big league hitters? Competition is never a bad thing, and I'm curious to see how Devenski does in the Spring.

More bullpen moves have to be made for established arms, but it doesn't hurt to sign a veteran who's been good before to a minor league deal. There's zero risk and potential for a decent reward.

Next. Angels dodge bullet as Mike Clevinger signs with White Sox. dark