LA Angels: Why it's way too early to start panicking about Raisel Iglesias

Raisel Iglesias, LA Angels
Raisel Iglesias, LA Angels / Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Raisel Iglesias signed a four-year, $58 million contract in the offseason, signing up to be the LA Angels' long-term franchise closer. So far this season, he hasn't quite lived up to the hype. He dominated in his contract year in 2021, recording 34 saves and a 2.57 ERA. So far this season, however, it hasn't gone that way.

He's posted a 4.05 ERA through 15 games up to this point, while giving up 1.4 homers per nine innings. The 95 ERA+ isn't looking too good, and he's just 1-1 on the year. Patience needs to be stressed, however. It's far too early to decide that Iglesias is going to be off of his game this year.

Nobody seems to be remembering that the Halos have only played 37 games. Many early judgements in general are being placed on this team, and all teams. This is still a small sample size on the season. Iglesias pitched in 65 games last year. He hasn't even made a dent into this season and already has eight saves. Don't even think about hopping off of the Iglesias hype yet.

Raisel Iglesias is still allowing just 5.4 hits per nine innings for the LA Angels.

Sure, Raisel Iglesias isn't striking as many batters out for the LA Angels this season (10.8 strikeouts per nine innings), but he's allowing very few baserunners. He has an 0.900 WHIP on the year, proving that the only thing he needs to do to get back to where he was is cut down on the long ball.

He's not walking guys too much (2.7 per nine frames), and guys certainly aren't getting their base knocks when he's on the bump. The only thing he's been prone to is the long ball, and while he's been prone to it in the past at times, expect him to progress to the mean as far as strikeouts go.

This is the lowest K/9 rate he's posted since 2018. In the three seasons prior to this one, he fanned 12.5 batters per nine innings. Take the three year sample size over the 15 game sample size. If he can get back to striking guys out, he won't even need to hold hitters to fewer home runs.

Don't believe that? Well, he gave up 1.4 homers per nine innings last season too and still cut that ERA down to 2.57 and got his ERA+ all the way up to 172. His FIP was just 2.83, as he earned the massive deal he got in the summer. The only difference between that season and this one was the strikeouts.

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Iglesias has given up runs in just three games all season. Keep that in perspective. He's going to have a monster year--he's already limiting hitters to getting on base. As long as he misses more bats OR limits the homers, he'll be great. He doesn't even need to do both to be effective.