The Los Angeles Angels have struggled in recent seasons, but they have a talented team that has the potential to compete in the American League.
The Angels had another poor season in 2022 as they finished third in the AL West with a 73-89 record. Less than sixty games into the season, manager Joe Madden was fired and replaced by Phil Nevin, who didn’t even benefit from the improvement in team performance that occasionally occurs after a preceding manager is fired.
Angels’ Biggest Strength
The Angels’ biggest strength is their superstar outfielder Mike Trout, who is widely considered one of the best players in the game. Trout missed much of the 2021 season due to injury but is expected to return to form for the 2023 season. Alongside Trout, the Angels have Taylor Ward and Hunter Renfroe, who have both played well in recent seasons.
The Los Angeles Angels also have some solid players in their infield, including first baseman Jared Walsh and middle infielder David Fletcher. However, they will need more production from their third baseman and second baseman if they hope to compete with other teams in the American League.
On the pitching side, the Angels have some promising young arms, including Shohei Ohtani, who is both a starting pitcher and a designated hitter. Ohtani has shown stretches of brilliance on the mound, but he will need to stay healthy and consistent to make a big impact in 2023. The Angels will also be relying on other pitchers such as Patrick Sandoval, Jose Suarez, and Reid Detmers to provide solid innings and keep opposing teams at bay.
The Angels have a talented team with some key players in Trout and Ohtani, but they will need to stay healthy and perform consistently to compete in the American League. The team will also need to see improved performances from some of their infielders and pitchers to make a significant impact in the 2023 season.
Important Offseason Moves
During the offseason, the Angels acquired Gio Urshela through a trade that also saw pitcher Alejandro Hidalgo sent to the Minnesota Twins. This was the first important move that the Angels made to shore up their infield defense. The 31-year-old possesses excellent shortstop and third base skills, and his strong bat can add to an offense that is currently producing well. In his last campaign, Urshela batted .285 with 64 runs batted in and 13 home runs. Having him around for the full 162-game season will benefit LA’s position player depth.
Another significant adjustment for this starting lineup of the Angels was the Hunter Renfroe trade. Renfroe’s capacity for powerful hits will have an instant effect. He batted.255 last season and hit 29 home runs while driving in 72 runs. He has moved throughout the league, but his ability to mash for power no matter where he plays is the one thing that has remained constant. Renfroe is unquestionably an improvement over Jo Adell, who showed promise, but Renfroe is a player who will help them win right away.
The last important move the Angels made is signing Tyler Anderson. The 33-year-old veteran agreed to a three-year, $39 million contract, which is very beneficial to the organization. With 178.2 innings of work, Anderson concluded the previous year with a 15-5 record and a 2.57 earned run average. It will be intriguing to see if Anderson can maintain that stability with the Angels after last year, which was by far his greatest year. If he can keep his earned run average around 3.00, he will fit in well as the number two starter in the Angels starting rotation, which features several young pitchers.
What to Watch Out for in Los Angeles
There are many intriguing developments to keep an eye on for this incredibly skilled crew. Given that he is in a walk year, Shohei Ohtani might have a campaign that a lot of people will remember for a very long time. He was up for his second MVP award last season, and he undoubtedly will be this year as well. Mike Trout will be hoping to increase his already illustrious stats and show the baseball world that he is capable of leading his team to the postseason.
Logan O’Hoppe, a 23-year-old catcher, is one of the more youthful players to keep an eye on. In the exchange that sent Brandon Marsh to the Phillies last year, they received O’Hoppe. He played for the double-A affiliate of the Phillies before the trade. O’Hoppe hit .275 with 45 runs batted in and 15 home homers in 75 games. He is one of the young players to watch this year who will upgrade the catcher position.
Left fielder Taylor Ward is the final guy to keep an eye out for. Last year, Ward had a scorching start last year and appeared to be a standout for the 2022 season. He was an All-Star level player early in the season, but by the end of the year, his output had slowed down and he was unable to get back to his hot start. It will be intriguing to see if he can consistently produce an All-Star season that would considerably improve this Angels team’s chances of making the playoffs.
1. Taylor Ward – LF
2. Mike Trout – CF
3. Shohei Ohtani – DH
4. Anthony Rendon – 3B
5. Hunter Renfroe – RF
6. Brandon Drury – 2B
7. Jared Walsh – 1B
8. Logan O’Hoppe – C
9. Luis Rengifo – SS
Max Stassi – C
David Fletcher – INF
Gio Urshela – INF/OF
Brett Phillips – OF
1. Shohei Ohtani – RHP
2. Tyler Anderson – LHP
3. Patrick Sandoval – LHP
4. Jose Suarez – LHP
5. Reid Detmers – LHP
6. Tucker Davidson – LHP
1. Carlos Estevez – RHP
2. Jimmy Herget – RHP
3. Ryan Tepera – RHP
4. Aaron Loup – LHP
4. Andrew Wantz – RHP
5. Jose Quijada – LHP
6. Zack Weiss – RHP
7. Jaime Barria – RHP
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