2022 Los Angeles Angels Player Reviews: Ryan Tepera
MLB: Oakland Athletics at Los Angeles Angels
Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Angels signed Ryan Tepera following a stellar 2021 season to be a rock in their bullpen, but after a shaky start to the year, he figured out a majority of his issues.

General manager Perry Minasian brought Tepera on board with a two-year, $14 million contract. At the 2021 trade deadline, his name became a hot topic because of his success with the Chicago Cubs during the first half, and parlayed that into a 2.50 ERA with the White Sox.

Minasian recognized Tepera’s turnaround and paid a premium price for his age-34 and 35 seasons. Prior to the All-Star break, his 4.08 ERA was a surface-level sign of an initial poor return on a costly reliever investment.

However, comparing his 2.86 ERA in the second half looks as if he performed at a higher level, but his FIP, batting average allowed, and home run rate were all higher than the first few months of the year. Tepera could’ve been a victim of bad luck, as many pitchers often are because there isn’t much to support any large shift in how he attacked hitters.

The Angels could’ve certainly benefitted from the manner in which he dominated in 2021, but his first season with his newest club showed clear signs of early regression after his K/9 lowered from 10.86 in 2021 to 7.38 in 2022.

Ryan Tepera 2022 highlight

The month of August was very kind to Tepera, posting a 2.16 ERA across 8.1 innings, but walked an incredibly fine line with an insane 5.03 FIP which was more of an indicator of his ability to limit runs without his best stuff and a fair amount of luck on his side.

His most impactful performance came on Oct. 1 against the Texas Rangers after he punched out two of the three batters he faced, earning the save with a spotless inning.

2023 outlook

In the final year of his deal with the Angels, Tepera will undoubtedly need to have a bounce-back season. To find the form that made him a sought-after deadline piece will lie in his ability to find his strikeout rhythm.

Without a defined closer in the bullpen, manager Phil Nevin could certainly hope to lean on Tepera if he’s up for the spot, but the early favorite for saves seems to be Carlos Estevez.

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