Pitching Staff Situation Still Remains a Puzzle

Updated: March 25, 2017

In just a little more than a week, the Angels will be beginning their regular season. As a result, it means that the final decisions insofar as who will be on their roster need to be made in that ring of time.

The position player part of the equation should not be too much of a brain-tickler to figure out. At least that is fair to bank on. On the other hand, the team’s pitching staff still remains quite a mystery to solve.

Garrett Richards and Matt Shoemaker are not going anywhere. Duh. Probably the only inquiry that is not yet answered is which of the two will be chosen to take the mound on Opening Day. Either one of them are suitable candidates if their name is called upon.

It is feasible to presume Ricky Nolasco, Jesse Chavez, and Tyler Skaggs will similarly be in the rotation in order to complete the hypothetical quintet. However, the only doubt here is relative to the latter of the trio. This stems from the one start he missed due to shoulder-related issues.

Names like Yusmeiro Petit and J.C. Ramirez are probable starters as well and make adequate sense if Skaggs temporarily gets left off the original roster. Jeff Fletcher of The Orange County Register suggests the idea that in terms of Skaggs, the “Angels theoretically may want him to start the season in Triple-A to get one or two more outings to build up his pitch-count.”

However, the starting rotation portion of the conundrum is (strangely enough) the easier thing to think about. The bullpen is really where the questions emerge like crazy. Cam Bedrosian and Andrew Bailey will undeniably be connected with this unit. Due to the fact that Huston Street will probably start the year on the DL, Bedrosian and Bailey are no-brainers to pencil in. Another guy to likely not meddle with according to Fletcher is José Álvarez. This pick is logical provided that José is a veteran, and Scioscia tends to be loyal when it comes to such individuals.

Alex Meyer is no longer in the cards since he was demoted to Triple-A Salt Lake yesterday. Because of this, the options thin out to some extent. It still remains tough even without Meyer being in the fold as of now. Blake Parker is having some kind of spring, and could thus sneak into the bullpen. Guys such as Kirby Yates and José Valdéz are important to give serious consideration to, but they have not been perfect per se. Mike Morin should not be forgotten about, either, yet hitters this spring have hit .375 against him.

With these details out there, it is no wonder why the team’s pitching staff remains where it is right now. A lot of these aforementioned picks could be on the roster. Certainly, there are only so many job openings available. Everything is bound to essentially go down to the wire. Consequently, a lot of what happens will hinge on how well or not so well the rest of Spring Training fares for these hurlers.

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