The Houston Astros could have taken a look at the former New York Met, but after declining his qualifying offer, Syndergaard found more money in Los Angeles. After only pitching two innings in the last two seasons (Tommy John surgery), the right-hander is taking his first steps in the American League.
With the Angels adding Noah Syndergaard, what does their rotation look like against the Astros?
The Angles biggest weakness over the last few seasons has been pitching. In the 2021 MLB Draft, the ball club used all of their picks on pitching prospects, showing how weak their crop is as well.
Even with a possible MVP in your rotation, Shohei Ohtani can’t pitch more than 25 games in a season, while his offensive support is greatly needed in the lineup as well. Ohtani is the likely American League MVP for his pitching and hitting heroics, but with Andrew Heaney traded at the deadline, they are relying on the market and their own prospects to backup Ohtani in the rotation.
Angels’ Rotation with Noah Syndergaard:
- Shohei Ohtani
- Noah Syndergaard
- Patrick Sandoval
- Jaime Barria
- Jose Suarez/Reid Detmers
These are the starters currently on the 40-man, except for Syndergaard whose signing is pending physicals. But with the names provided, this rotation doesn’t look lethal by what we know from this past season.
Patrick Sandoval, a former Astros’ farm hand, had a career-year in 2021, posting a 3.62 ERA over 87 innings. The sample sizes aren’t large for the backend of this rotation, but even for Reid Detmers, the Angels’ No. 1 prospect, the 22-year-old left-hander had five starts, sporting a 7.40 ERA.
The free agency market still holds All-Star caliber starters, and with Mike Trout, Jared Walsh, Anthony Rendon and Ohtani in the lineup, they could still try adding another rotational piece. Jon Heyman of MLB Network floated the idea of Justin Verlander on a short-term deal, as he is expected to turn down the Astros’ qualifying offer.
At the moment, the Astros still have the upper hand with eight starters from the lineup returning and a more complete rotation, possibly looking for another starter.