The 2023 Spring Training ZiPS projections have the Los Angeles Angels finishing in a second-place tie with the Seattle Mariners in the American League West with respective 85-77 records. The Houston Astros are projected to win the division with 90 wins.
The analytical model takes into account player projections and playing time, then generates a million versions of each team based on each player’s range of probable outcomes. The system was designed by Dan Szymborski of FanGraphs and is updated every year in an attempt to create more accurate outcomes.
In the previous ZiPS projections from the start of the offseason, the Angels were forecast to win 84 games. However, that didn’t take into account some of the team’s later roster additions, including Brandon Drury, Carlos Estévez, Matt Moore and Brett Phillips.
Despite being tied in the standings, the Mariners have slightly higher playoff odds than the Angels, at 54.0% compared to 53.2%, and a higher chance to win the division at 21.7% to 21.2%. Additionally, the Angels trail the Mariners in World Series win percentage, at 3.5% compared to 3.6%.
Szymborski writes that the Angels are one of the most “interesting puzzles in baseball,” citing the star power on their flawed roster and the depth signings they made to patch up certain holes.
Szymborski believes it is likely Shohei Ohtani will leave in free agency at the end of the 2023 season, but that the Angels have a good enough roster to potentially make the playoffs this year.
Whereas the Astros, Mariners and Angels are separated by five games in the projections, the rest of the AL West is expected to be uncompetitive, with the Texas Rangers and Oakland Athletics winning 79 and 72 games, respectively.
Elsewhere in the AL, the New York Yankees are projected to win a tightly contested East division with an 89-73 record, and the Cleveland Guardians are projected to win the Central with an 83-79 record.
Angels prospects Logan O’Hoppe & Edgar Quero listed among MLB Pipeline’s top-10 catchers
The Angels were represented by Logan O’Hoppe (No. 5) and Edgar Quero on MLB Pipeline’s list of top-10 catching prospects entering the 2023 season.
O’Hoppe joined the Angels in a trade with the Philadelphia Phillies at the deadline last year and immediately became the organization’s top prospect. Quero was signed by the Angels out of Cienfuegos, Cuba in early 2021
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