The Angels will still use six starters but plan to throw Shohei Ohtani every six days, not games. This means if the Angels have a day off, that sixth starter will be pushed back or have his start skipped altogether.
This move means the Halos will squeeze a couple more starts out of Ohtani and get him closer to the 32 starts a pitcher would get in a five-man rotation. Simply put, more Ohtani starts means more chances for the Angels to win.
This Shohei Ohtani update could impact what the Angels do in free agency
With a six-man rotation still being the plan, the Halos could use another starter. Ohtani, Tyler Anderson, Patrick Sandoval, Reid Detmers, and Jose Suarez figure to be part of the equation, but the Angels don't have an established sixth starter.
The Halos have been linked to Kodai Senga in free agency. This would be interesting considering he also comes from Japan and is used to pitching once a week. Senga would give the rotation a huge boost and would be my top choice out of the pitchers the Angels have been linked to.
Signing Senga would move Jose Suarez into that sixth starter role. This could mean he starts most of the time but we could see him in the bullpen on occasion when he has a start skipped.
If the Angels miss out on Senga, it's possible they look to a different tier for a pitcher to round out their rotation. Someone like Seth Lugo who they've been interested in could make sense here. Lugo has been at his best coming out of the bullpen but wants to start. The Angels could have him do both by using him in this swingman role.
A guy who would've been perfect would've been Trevor Williams who the Nationals just signed. Williams has extensive experience as a starter and a reliever and excelled in a role where he bounced back and forth from the rotation to the bullpen for the Mets this past season.
A name I think is very possible to see return to the Angels is Michael Lorenzen. He was here this past year and reportedly wants to return. He could be that sixth starter who makes 18-20 starts for the Angels and gives some work out of the bullpen as well.
The Angels using Ohtani every sixth day instead of the sixth game could lead to a couple of extra wins. A couple more wins could be the difference in deciding whether the Angels make the playoffs or not. It'll be interesting to see how he handles the workload, but I think he'll be just fine.