LA Angels overreaction #2: The Angels have the best starting rotation in all of baseball
Angels starting pitchers absolutely dominated in the three-game series in Oakland. Shohei Ohtani started it all off by delivering six shutout innings with ten strikeouts on Opening Day. Patrick Sandoval followed that up by allowing just one run in five innings of work. Tyler Anderson capped the weekend with six shutout innings of his own.
Overall, Angels starting pitchers allowed just one run in 17 innings of work. That's a 0.53 rotation ERA It's hard to be much better than that.
As encouraging as it was to see these starting pitchers dominate, it's important to keep in mind they were facing what might be the worst lineup in baseball. This lineup had players like Ramon Laureano, Aledmys Diaz, and Seth Brown as the most feared bats. Are those guys scrubs? No, but compare it to a team like the Angels who have Trout, Ohtani, and Rendon or even a team like the Mariners who they're about to face, who have Julio Rodriguez, Teoscar Hernandez, and Ty France. It doesn't even compare.
The top four of this Angels rotation can be among the league's best, especially if Patrick Sandoval and Reid Detmers pitch to their potential, but there're more than just four starters in a rotation.
Jose Suarez finished the season very strongly but did so against mostly inferior competition and without giving the Angels much length. He'd struggle mightily against hitters he faced for a third time. Can he be more effective against better opponents and against hitters for a third time? Can Tucker Davidson or Griffin Canning pitch adequately enough as the sixth starter to give this Angels offense a chance to win games they start?
I love the front of this rotation but the back-end does make me bring their ranking down a tick. Their rotation as a whole is still quite good, but I hesitate to call them the best.