Angels News: Jose Suarez Impresses With First Career Complete Game
Jose Suarez, 2021 Season
Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports

Prior to Saturday night, Jose Suarez had never gotten out of the sixth inning of a game. The Los Angeles Angels starter and reliever had gone 5.2 innings three times during his first three seasons, but he blew past that against the Texas Rangers.

By the time he reached his career high of 6.0 innings pitched, he had allowed zero runs on three hits, and Joe Maddon kept him in. He then tossed a perfect seventh inning, then a perfect eighth. On 87 pitches, he found himself in the ninth inning after having never thrown a pitch in the seventh during a start in his career.

In the ninth, he allowed an infield single and a run, but Maddon stuck by him. Using 13 pitches, Suarez left the field with a complete game. On the night, he finished with one run allowed on five hits, no walks, and eight strikeouts having thrown 100 pitches on the dot.

Maddon gave his analysis on why Suarez had struggled to go deep into games before and why a performance like this one may be huge in helping him take the next step as a pitcher, according to Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com:

“He attacked with strikes all day, which is something he had not been doing,” Angels manager Joe Madon said. “That’s what had prevented him from going deep into the game. But he was outstanding. And any time a young man throws a complete game, I’m always interested in their next start and what it does to them.”

“He’s got the stuff and the makeup to be really good,” Maddon said. “Hopefully that kind of performance will stick. Getting the last out of a game matters. Complete games matter. It makes them better players and better pitchers.”

Suarez credited his changeup for allowing him to be aggressive and throw strikes.

“It gives me extreme confidence when my changeup is working that well,” Suarez said. “It gives me confidence with my other pitches, and I can use any pitch in different counts.”

“He’s got the stuff and the makeup to be really good,” Maddon said. “Hopefully that kind of performance will stick. Getting the last out of a game matters. Complete games matter. It makes them better players and better pitchers.”

During the final month of this season, the Angels are going to evaluate everything they see as they try to figure out their free agent and internal development needs for the winter. If Suarez can finish out the season on a note like this, he can easily earn himself a role on next year’s team.

Whether as a starter or as a long reliever, The Angels 23-year old pitcher has proven what he can do at his best. Nights like Saturday work towards proving he can do it consistently while striving for enough wins to earn a playoff berth.

Angels release Jose Iglesias

The Angels continued their move toward the future by releasing crafty shortstop Jose Iglesias. The move came as somewhat of a surprise, but the team felt it was time to start seriously looking at players that may actually be in Anaheim next season.

Clearly, they either had no interest in re-signing him, or they felt that he had no interest in returning. Either way, he enters free agency a little earlier than expected.

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