The best Angels player to wear number 31
Numbers 29 and 30 are retired by the Los Angeles Angels, and an argument could be made that 31 should be as well. Dean Chance has an argument of being one of the five best pitchers in franchise history. He won a Cy Young Award and was really good for his five full seasons as an Angel.
For most numbers, Chance would've been the choice. He had a 2.83 ERA in 223 appearances (168 starts) as an Angel. He won the pitching Triple Crown in 1964 when he went 20-9 with a 1.65 ERA in 278.1 innings pitched. This was his Cy Young year.
Chance was traded to the Twins following the 1966 season. Had he pitched more with the Angels it's possible he'd be the best player to wear number 31, but even then he'd have work to do because of who the actual best player is.
Chuck Finley is the best player to wear number 31 in LA Angels history
Finley spent the first 14 of his 17 years in the MLB with the Angels. He began his career as a reliever but would become a full-time member of the Angels rotation in the 1988 season. His real breakout would occur just one season later.
Finley went 16-9 with a 2.57 ERA in 29 starts and 199.2 innings pitched. He was an all-star for the first time, and looked like a building block for the future.
That success would carry into the 1990 season when he was at his absolute best. Finley went 18-9 with a 2.40 ERA in 32 starts and 236 innings pitched. He was an all-star again and finished seventh in the AL Cy Young voting. His 158 ERA+ was a career-best and so was the ERA. His 2.40 ERA is the lowest single-season ERA for a southpaw in Angels history.
Finley was a workhorse for the Angels and would rarely miss a start. He wasn't the most talented pitcher they've ever had, but the longevity and consistency he had as an Angel is unmatched.
The southpaw is the franchise's leader in bWAR for pitchers, wins, innings, and starts. He's one of the best pitchers in franchise history, and again, an argument can be made to have his jersey retired. Only three players have worn it in 23 years since he left. Tyler Anderson becoming the fourth to wear it makes it less likely, though.