Pitcher-needy Angels took nothing but pitchers in MLB Draft
If you’re wondering why the Los Angeles Angels have only made the playoffs once during Mike Trout’s MLB career, you can look directly to their pitching as the biggest culprit. The Angels have struggled with their pitching for several years and haven’t had a consistent ace since Jered Weaver’s last year of dominance in 2014.
New Angels GM Perry Minasian recognized how much of a weakness their pitching has been and attempted to address it with his first draft. His Angeles literally drafted 20 pitchers in 20 rounds. With the exception of 12th-round pick Mason Albright, who is from IMG Academy, all the pitchers are from colleges.
The Angels had 20 draft picks.
The Angels drafted 20 pitchers. pic.twitter.com/tjAIGIhMuf
— B/R Walk-Off (@BRWalkoff) July 13, 2021
Not only did the Angels show they recognize what a weakness pitching is and has been for them, but their draft tells a second story. Taking nearly all college pitchers indicates the Angels feel they have a team that is ready to win now. College pitchers generally are further along in their development process than high school pitchers. That means they are closer to being able to help the MLB team.
The Angels in 2021 redefined drafting for need. They should hope that their sole focus on pitchers didn’t lead them to pass up some other players who would be helpful, but they probably did. They probably also figure that between Shohei Ohtani, Mike Trout, Anthony Rendon and Jared Walsh, their offense is in good hands. They just need pitching help badly.
#Angels scouting director Matt Swanson he said he doesn't think a team has ever drafted only pitchers in a full draft (excluding last year's 5-round draft).
He said it was to fill a need in organization as a whole (not necessarily the majors).
— Jeff Fletcher (@JeffFletcherOCR) July 13, 2021
The Angels entered the draft 26th in MLB in team ERA. For a team with World Series aspirations, that won’t cut it. They know it and are attempting to address it.