LA Angels pitcher Jaime Barria has exceeded expectations
Jaime Barria had a good year in 2022 but I was not a believer that he'd replicate it. He had a 2.61 ERA, but virtually all of his advanced metrics signaled regression was coming. Barria must've heard my criticism and is using that added motivation to prove me wrong, right?
Through 11 appearances, Barria has a 1.61 ERA. The first ten came in long relief, and his most recent appearance was as a starter. His dominance in a victory over Boston earned him at least one other start.
Facing one of baseball's best offenses, Barria pitched five brilliant innings. He allowed no runs on just two hits with no walks and six strikeouts. He was one of a bunch of unexpected heroes that showed up in the Angels' sweep over the Red Sox.
As good as his 1.61 ERA is, four of the five earned runs he's allowed came in his first appearance! Since that rough outing in Seattle, Barria has allowed just one earned run in 24.1 innings of work (0.37 ERA).
I went from not being sure Barria would even last the entire year to now asking myself where the Angels would be without him? He has the chance to really make his mark in the rotation and I'm really excited to see how he does in that role.