The Los Angeles Angels made their first of hopefully many moves this offseason by signing Tyler Anderson to a three-year $39 million dollar deal.
The deal pays him $13 million dollars annually which is honestly really cheap for starting pitchers, especially ones coming off an all-star season.
Perry Minasian spoke yesterday about the signing and his comments are spot on.
With shifts going away in 2023, Tyler Anderson and pitchers like him will have a new reality. Anderson is not a strikeout guy (only 7.0 K/9 in 2022) and is a guy who allows a lot of ground balls. The Dodgers were a team that shifted a lot, so it undoubtedly helped Anderson out.
What Minasian said about that is that you really never know how it'll turn out until he pitches but he pointed to his ability to limit hard contact as a reason he'd be successful still. Anderson was in the 98th percentile in average exit velocity and hard-hit rate according to baseball savant. He was also in the 86th percentile in barrel rate.
Minasian pointed to defenders having an easier time field when the ball isn't hit as hard which is absolutely right.
The next point brought up was the lefties in the rotation. Anderson will be the fourth lefty in the rotation alongside Reid Detmers, Patrick Sandoval, and Jose Suarez. Minasian basically said the Angels were looking for quality starters and weren't paying attention to the hand they threw with. This is how they should be thinking.
For the bullpen, I think it's important to have a lefty or two who can match up with guys like Yordan Alvarez and Corey Seager. In the rotation you're looking for pitchers who can get both righties and lefties out, Anderson can do that.
Anderson is a pitcher who can eat innings and Minasian correctly points that out as an area of need. The Angels have a very promising but very young rotation. You never really know what guys like Patrick Sandoval, as good as he was this past season, will give you every day. Even when Anderson wasn't as good of a pitcher in places like Colorado and Pittsburgh, he always ate innings.
Minasian talked about Anderson's personality and "edge" which are other things the Angels should be looking for.
Lastly, Minasian talked about losing the second-round pick to sign Anderson. While that's definitely annoying, the Angels have to try and win now if they want any shot at retaining Shohei Ohtani past the 2023 campaign. Signing someone who was good enough to turn down the Qualifying Offer helps the Angels do that.
He won't be expected to be the best pitcher in baseball, the Angels really didn't need that. He's expected to be a leader, eat innings, and give the Angels a chance to win every fifth or sixth day.
The Angels got him on cheap money and Minasian, later on, spoke about them not being close to done with other needs to fill. I'm excited to see what he does next.