We are through 10 spring training games (counting one split-squad game), and the Angels are 5-4-1. Ohtani is now with Team Japan hitting bombs in the leadup to the WBC, and eight or nine Angels will be leaving Spring Training soon for their respective WBC rosters, but let’s take a peek at where we are with the Angels’ roster currently.
The chart below shows the Angels’ pitching statistics as raw numbers and how they rank amongst all AL teams in Spring Training. All in all, the pitchers are pitching very well, which is exciting!
The Angels’ batting statistics for the American League during Spring Training look like this: Needless to say, the offense will need to hit better to stay competitive. The reason NOT to be worried is that many of the Angels players are going to the WBC, which could have them focused on multiple things simultaneously.
The Angels are currently playing many lineups, which is what should happen in Spring Training, but there are some solid trends that Phil Nevin seems to be leaning on already. Nevin looks to be keeping his presumed starting roster for the season together and well-rested while also getting a good look at the fringe roster batters against Major League level pitching. Nevin is also getting a good look at the Angels bullpen options. His bullpen is pretty well set regarding who will be in there, seeing as seven or eight pitchers are guaranteed to be on the opening-day roster out of the ‘Pen. Those pitchers are Carlos Estevez, Jimmy Herget, Ryan Tepera, Aaron Loup, Jose Quijada and Matt Moore. If Jaime Barria wins the sixth rotation spot, that could leave two bullpen slots open, and if he doesn’t, then he will be in the bullpen, leaving one available spot…
My thoughts and predictions for the opening-day roster are as follows:
C: Max Stassi/Logan O’Hoppe
1B: Jared Walsh/Gio Urshela/Brandon Drury
2B: Brandon Drury/David Fletcher
SS: Luis Rengifo/David Fletcher
3B: Anthony Rendon/Gio Urshela
RF: Hunter Renfroe
CF: Mike Trout
LF: Taylor Ward
Utility OF: Brett Phillips
Utility INF/OF: Andrew Velasquez, Livan Soto
I could see the Angels keeping all these guys up. This would give 14 position players which on the 26 man roster could be too many. They are sending Livan Soto and possibly Logan O’Hoppe down to triple A.
- Shohei Ohtani
- Tyler Anderson
- Patrick Sandoval
- Reid Detmers
- Jose Suarez
- Griffin Canning/Tucker Davidson
Long Relief: Canning or Davidson and Jaime Barria
7th Inning: Matt Moore, Jose Quijada, Aaron Loup, Ryan Tepara
8th Inning: Jimmy Herget
9th Inning Carlos Estevez
This combination of players gets the Angels to a 26 man roster, but it is a bit disappointing that they could not fit Ben Joyce into the major league roster at this point. He has been one of the Angels best relievers in the spring and could well turn into a dominant closer with his pure power stuff.
All in all, I feel like this could be a very good season for the Angels. The playoffs are certainly a possibility, and with a couple of fortunate breaks, we could be looking at a deep run and possibly even a World Series birth. It’s a good time to be an Angels’ fan!