Angels 2022 Opening Day Season Guide- The Essentials

Updated: Apr 11

The season is finally here! We are an Astros based blog site, but I hope the Angels fans will agree that the DATA I present here is helpful for their understanding of their team as well.


The structure of these guides will be the same and be updated with input and changes as I receive and process it especially for the other teams.

  1. Analysis of the MLB projected roster

  2. Heatmap

  3. Projected Batting Lineup per Roster Resource

  4. Projected Pitching Lineup per Roster Resource

  5. Position by position ratings

  6. Greatest Strengths

  7. Greatest Weaknesses

  8. Top Prospects – focusing on those who can impact in 2022

  9. Payroll analysis- flexibility for trades or additional free agent signings

  10. Areas to Address by the trade deadline expires

  11. Season Prediction

We will put out a guide for the other teams in the league as the Astros play them for the first time and update the other teams before each series as needed.


With Opening Day, we give you the Angels 2022 Opening Day Season Guide- The Essentials


Analysis of the Angels Projected Roster

(per Roster Resource on Fangraphs.com)


Heatmap


Here is the overall projected WAR of each team by position for each team as of April 6th, 2022. The key for this table is to understand where the Angels rank by position to understand their relative strengths and weaknesses as a team to the league. In short, the top team will be deep red, and the bottom team will be dark blue. The table attached is sorted by overall WAR.

Projected Batting Lineup per Roster Resource

Players in red will be on the injured list at the beginning of the season. The Angels start the season with no major expected contributors on the injured list.


Players in green are the key additions to the lineup. The Angels traded for Tyler Wade in November. Wade is expected to be in a platoon with Duffy and Mayfield at 2B.


One interesting note as summarized by Jeff Passan on Twitter.

@JeffPassan

Apr 2

Outfielder Justin Upton has been designated for assignment by the Los Angeles Angels, sources tell ESPN. The Angels will owe him $28 million for this season, the final one in a five-year deal. Unlikely anyone deals for Upton at that price, so likelihood is he'll be a free agent.

The Angels have moved on from their former star after three subpar seasons.

The stats shown here are PROJECTED 2022 stats. The table in green shows the league average OPS and wOBA for each spot in the batting order in 2021. It then shows the projected team performance vs. that league average.


The Angels have their Big Two- Trout and Ohtani- at the top of the order and they are to no surprise EXCELLENT. Walsh and Rendon are both very good. Adell is the key for the rest of the offensive production. IF Adell performs, I would expect him to move to the fifth spot in the order. Max Stassi has become an above average catcher.

Projected Pitching Lineup per Roster Resource


The average ERA/ FIP in the AL

Starting Pitchers- 4.46/ 4.38

Relief Pitchers- 4.15/ 4.15

Projected stats in table are heat mapped vs. these averages


Players in red will be on the injured list at the beginning of the season. Griffin Canning, Cooper Criswell, and Chris Rodriguez are all starting on the IL but are not expected to be major contributors in 2022 and are not on this table.


Players in green are the key additions to the lineup. The Angels have added nearly half of the projected staff to improve their pitching in 2022.

The Angels once again have a few very good to excellent projected players. They have Ohtani and Iglesias headlining this group. However, they still have several players that the projections frame as marginal players. Detmers may surprise as he is the Angels number one prospect.


Position-by-position Rankings

The Angels relative rank by position is shown below.


Greatest Strengths

  1. When you have Mike Trout the strengths start with him. The only real question is his health in his year 30 season.

  2. Ohtani is the MVP. He hits; he pitches; he plays in the OF if needed. You will tell your grandchildren about Ohtani.

  3. The Angels invested over $60M AAV in pitching this year and over $33M AAV in the bullpen. The Angels have FOUR RP projected to deliver 0.5 or more WAR in 2022. This is rare.

  4. Rendon is still a very good 3B.

Greatest Weaknesses

  1. In a single word- depth. The Angels have some great superstars but when/if they get injured, the lack of depth is a challenge.

  2. In a second word- health. Keep Trout and Ohtani healthy all year. Is it possible? If both are available for 150+ games, this team makes the postseason.

  3. The Angels are weak up the middle. I thought THIS was the perfect spot for Correa to sign. The Angels chose to deploy those resources to pitching. I expect if the Angels are in contention that they will trade for a 2B or SS (how about Whit Merrifield or Tony Kemp?) to improve one of those positions.

  4. The Corner OF are currently projected to be a weakness. I expect Jo Adell will outperform his current projections.

  5. The other position that the Angels are most likely to need help with is Starting Pitching. It somewhat depends on Detmers if a deadline trade to upgrade SP is needed.

Top Prospects – focusing on those who can impact in 2022

According to MLB Pipeline, these are the Angels top prospects.

Detmers will be one of the SP in 2022. Almost all the other top prospects are more than a year away.


Payroll analysis- flexibility for trades or additional free agent signings

According to the Roster Resource payroll projection, the Angels currently project to have a $208M payroll in 2022. The CBA negotiations determined a new CBT level of $230M, and the Angels have around $22M for transactions in 2022. I would expect the Angels will only add additional payroll via trades if they are close to a postseason appearance which I expect them to be.


Areas to Address before the Trade Deadline expires


The Angels are likely to add middle infield and starting pitching help at or before the deadline.


Season Prediction- As currently constructed, the Angels project to win 85-89 games and finish second in the AL West. I will say 87 wins and a loss in the AL Wild Card round.


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