in the 2021 offseason, the Los Angeles Angels made re-signing closer Raisel Iglesias a priority. Iglesias was dominant in the 2021 season, and wound up signing a four-year deal worth $58 million to remain in Anaheim. The Angels had their closer locked up for four years, or so we thought.
As we all know, the Angels struggled mightily in the first half of 2022 and that led to the team selling at the deadline. The 2022 trade deadline will be remembered by Angels fans for the two trades made with the Phillies. The Halos landed both Logan O'Hoppe and Mickey Moniak in separate deals in exchange for Brandon Marsh and Noah Syndergaard respectively. The Angels have benefitted greatly from both deals.
A third deal made was one the Angels didn't necessarily have to make, but made with one very clear intention. They traded Raisel Iglesias to the Braves in exchange for Tucker Davidson and Jesse Chavez. Money was cleared, but from a production standpoint, this deal never made any sense.
Regrading the Braves deal with the LA Angels for Tucker Davidson
The Angels were able to get off of Iglesias without eating any of his large contract, That for Arte Moreno was a win, but for the Angels, trading him when he had a rough first half was not ideal. Iglesias wound up allowing just one earned run in 26.1 innings as a Brave to finish the season (0.34 ERA). This season has been more of a struggle for Iglesias as he's posted a 3.94 ERA in 32 appearances, but he's converted 18 of his 20 save opportunities.
In this deal the Angels acquired veteran right-hander Jesse Chavez, who had a 2.11 ERA in 31 appearances and 38.1 innings pitched as a Brave that season. Chavez wound up struggling mightily as an Angel, posting an ERA of 7.59 in 11 appearances, and he was eventually DFA'd by the Halos. The Braves would claim him off of waivers, and Chavez would magically pitch well again for Atlanta.
Watching Chavez only be effective for the Braves was definitely annoying, but the 39-year-old wasn't any big part of future plans for the Angels. The bigger piece of the deal was 26-year-old Tucker Davidson.
Davidson had been up and down between AAA and the majors, making 9 appearances (8 starts) from 2020-2022 with the Braves. He had a 5.11 ERA in those appearances, and didn't show much of anything that'd tell you he'd be anything special at the MLB level. The negative thoughts were proven to be correct as Davidson had a 6.87 ERA in his eight starts as an Angel down the stretch.
This season, with Davidson out of options, the Angels were very clearly going to do whatever it took to keep him around. He pitched well in Spring Training but narrowly lost out to Griffin Canning in their battle for the sixth starter spot. Davidson was the long man, and had some good moments but was mostly bad.
Davidson ended the month of April with a 2.40 ERA in six appearances and 15 innings pitched. Since May 1, his ERA has been 10.26. He made just 12 appearances in three months as the combination of Angels starters getting deeper and his ineffectiveness limited his usage dramatically.
With this in mind, the Angels have officially DFA'd the southpaw with Reynaldo Lopez taking his spot. Davidson had some solid moments like his four scoreless innings in Oakland in the second game of the season, but his Angels tenure was mostly forgettable. He ended with a 6.72 ERA in 26 appearances as an Angel. It's better than Jesse Chavez's, but that's not saying much.
The Angels got absolutely nothing for Iglesias, but they did clear money that Arte Moreno had the Angels re-invest in relievers like Carlos Estevez and Matt Moore. Those two combined essentially make up the AAV of one year of Iglesias. That bumps it down from an F, but the trade was still a bad one to get literally nothing of value for a really solid closer.