After a disappointing 2022 campaign, the Los Angeles Angels spent most of the offseason retooling their roster in hopes of being more competitive this year.
The team most notably bolstered their pitching staff with the signings of All-Star starter Tyler Anderson and relievers Carlos Estévez and Matt Moore, while upgrading their lineup and defense with the additions of Brandon Drury, Brett Phillips, Hunter Renfroe and Gio Urshela.
The aforementioned names joined an Angels core that includes superstars Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout, veterans David Fletcher and Anthony Rendon, and up-and-coming risers Reid Detmers, Patrick Sandoval and José Suarez.
With a much more talented group on paper, the Angels have their sights on advancing to the postseason for the first time 2014. However, general manager Perry Minasian stopped short of making such a guarantee, per Bill Shaikin of the L.A. Times:
“I’ve been around too long in this game,” he said. “You never know. I’m just not a guarantee person.”
Minasian is hesitant to promise the Angels will play in October this year due to the competitiveness of the American League West:
“There’s not that many rebuilding teams per se, so there is a lot of parity,” Minasian said. “Our division is really difficult. Houston is the class of the division. Seattle made the playoffs last year. They’re not going anywhere. Texas had a huge offseason, two in a row.”
Minasian also explained his offseason strategy and revealed he prioritized signing multiple depth players over one big name:
“We like what we’ve done,” he said. “It’s always fun to make the big splash. As a sports fan myself, when my basketball team or my football team goes out there and gets the best player, you get excited.
“For us, we already have some high-end talent. We really wanted to focus on improving the middle of the roster. Instead of going and pushing the chips in on one player, we wanted to spread it out and try to fill as many holes as we could.”
While Minasian couldn’t offer any assurances that the Angels would make the playoffs this year, he at the very least put them in a position to be competitive with his offseason moves.
ZiPS projects Angels to tie with Mariners for 2nd place in AL West
The 2023 Spring Training ZiPS projections have the Angels finishing in a second-place tie with the Seattle Mariners in the AL 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.
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