It’s a pivotal season for the Los Angeles Angels, as Anaheim looks to make the playoffs for the first time since 2014. On paper, the Angels boast an impressive lineup led by superstars Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani. But, can the rotation get the job done this year? Let’s take a look at how the Angels rotation shapes up for the 2023 season.
A Look at the Angels Rotation Options
- RHP Shohei Ohtani (15-9, 2.33 ERA, 11.9 K/9)
- LHP Tyler Anderson (15-5, 2.57 ERA, 7.0 K/9)
- LHP Patrick Sandoval (6-9, 2.91 ERA, 9.1 K/9)
- LHP Reid Detmers (7-6, 3.77 ERA, 8.5 K/9)
- LHP José Suarez (8-8, 3.96 ERA, 8.5 K/9)
The Los Angeles Angels have primarily used a six-man rotation over the past few seasons, to limit the workload for the team’s starters. That could change in 2023, as the Angels are interested in increasing workloads for its starters.
Conceivably, this could mean more innings for staff ace and Team Japan star Shohei Ohtani. The 2021 AL MVP had his best season to date on the mound in 2022, a season that saw the two-way superstar strike out 219 batters — sixth-best in all of baseball — over 166 innings. Ohtani has a devastating arsenal, highlighted by a plus fastball and an elite slider. But, how much will the Angels push Ohtani this year?
Anaheim seemingly upgraded from Michael Lorenzen this past winter, as the Angels added 15 game winner Tyler Anderson to its rotation to slot behind Ohtani. Anderson had his best season of his career with the Dodgers in 2022, and Anaheim will look for similar results in 2023.
Anderson is set, at least at this moment, to be one of several left-handers in the Angels rotation. Fellow lefty Patrick Sandoval overhauled his arsenal usage over the past two seasons, and it’s turned him into one of the better pitchers in the game. Sandoval proved to be quite dominant in the second half of last season. The 26-year-old posted a 2.53 ERA in the second half of the 2022 season, and was one of just 19 pitchers (min. 100 IP) to post a K/9 of 9.0 or higher and a sub-3.00 ERA.
Former University of Louisville star Reid Detmers had his ups and downs in his first season MLB campaign. The ups for Detmers were impressive, and that sentiment was especially true on May 10 when the 23-year-old no-hit the Rays. However, the left-hander couldn’t stay consistent for much of the year. It seemed like Detmers, who boasts a solid fastball and a fantastic slider when on his game, was on the right track in the summer. Detmers posted sub-2.00 ERAs in both July and August. But, a 4.97 ERA over the final month of the season proved that the young lefty still has work to do.
Lastly, there’s José Suarez. Suarez’s numbers from last season looked a lot like his numbers from 2021. The 25-year-old posted eight wins and 3.96 ERA in 2022, not much different from the eight wins and 3.75 ERA he had a year earlier.
Should the Angels need starters, in-house options include LHP Jhonathan Diaz, RHP Chase Silseth, and RHP Griffin Canning. Both Diaz and Silseth made starts for Anaheim last season, while Canning missed all of 2022.