The Los Angeles Angels have had bullpen woes for years.
In order to play winning baseball, a reliable relief staff is always a huge key, and that’s not something the Angels have had lately.
Fortunately, the organization has done a nice job of addressing the issue this offseason.
L.A. shouldn’t be done yet, but the team’s bullpen is in better shape today than it was a month ago.
The Angels are still searching for their first playoff bid since 2014, and the hope is that the drought will finally come to an end in 2022.
If that does happen, it’ll likely be due in part to the relief efforts of these three guys.
3. Mike Mayers
Mike Mayers has been one of L.A.’s most reliable relievers in recent seasons.
The 29-year-old has been with the Angels for two years, and they’re certainly enjoyed having him around.
In the 2021 season, he posted a 3.84 ERA, 117 ERA+, 3.84 FIP, and 1.29 WHIP across a whopping 72 appearances.
Along the way, he fanned 90 batters across 75.0 innings of work, giving him an impressive K/9 rate of 10.8.
Mike Mayers hitting the outside corner. 84mph slider, 90mph cutter, 95mph fastball pic.twitter.com/Nxg3pbUOZK
— Lucas (@DBITLefty) March 29, 2021
In the 2020 season, which was his first with L.A., he was even better.
The righty appeared in 29 games in the 2020 campaign and registered a 2.10 ERA and 2.19 FIP.
Overall, he has a 3.34 ERA and 3.37 FIP since joining the Angels.
Mayers is under club control until 2024, so L.A. is going to reap the benefits of his services for multiple more seasons.
2. Aaron Loup
The Angels signed Aaron Loup to a deal a couple of weeks ago.
Aaron Loup deal with Angels, per source: Two years, $17M.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) November 22, 2021
This should end up being a fantastic addition for L.A.
Loup was one of the best relievers in baseball in 2021, and if he can pitch at a similar level in 2022, that’ll be a huge boost for this bullpen.
The southpaw maintained a tiny 0.95 ERA over 65 appearances with the New York Mets in the 2021 campaign.
He complemented that mark with a 2.45 FIP and 0.94 WHIP.
He also finished the year with a ridiculous 422 ERA+, which is literally 322 percent better than league average.
That tells you everything you need to know about how dominant he was.
Loup was really good in the 2020 season as well (2.52 ERA), so it doesn’t seem like his 2021 campaign was just lightning in a bottle.
The Angels are getting a great arm here.
1. Raisel Iglesias
Raisel Iglesias tops the list.
Barring some surprising development, the 31-year-old is going to be a key member of L.A.’s bullpen for years to come.
That’s because he just inked a deal with the Angels that will keep him under club control through the 2025 season.
— Los Angeles Angels (@Angels) December 2, 2021
Iglesias and Loup are going to form a lethal duo for the Angels in late-inning situations.
Loup will likely serve as a setup man most of the time before handing things over to Iglesias.
Iglesias spent the 2021 season with L.A., so Angels fans know what they’re getting.
The righty is one of the best relievers in the game.
He went 34-for-39 on save opportunities in 2021, giving him a conversion rate of 87.2 percent.
He also posted a 2.57 ERA, 2.83 FIP, 13.2 K/9, and 2.8 bWAR en route to an 11th-place finish in the AL Cy Young race.
His track record speaks for itself.
Since the start of the 2016 season, he has a 2.80 ERA and 3.30 FIP.
That’s a huge sample size, and those are some very impressive results.
Mayers, Loup, and Iglesias are three really solid arms for L.A. to build its relief core around.