The Los Angeles Angels had been quiet for most of the offseason, and their first big signing is not one that should fire up the fan base.
The Angels signed free agent pitcher Matt Harvey to a 1-year, $11 million deal that can be worth up to $14 million depending on performance. Harvey made eight appearances for the Mets last season before they jettisoned him to Cincinnati. In 24 starts with the Reds, Harvey went 7-7 with a 4.50 ERA and 111 strikeouts in 128 innings.
The Angels are desperate for starting pitching help, but Harvey for $11 million is the wrong place to start.
Harvey last put together a worthwhile season in 2015. He’s had a Tommy John surgery, surgery for Thoracic outlet syndrome, and a stress injury in his shoulder. What on earth makes them think he’ll be able to give them a full season with decent production?
The Angels are betting that Harvey will build upon the improved results he showed in Cincinnati and give them 150-plus innings, but I’ll believe it when I see it. The Angels were said to be in on Nathan Eovaldi and JA Happ and both pitchers re-signed with their teams. Dallas Keuchel is still out there. Gio Gonzalez is available. So are Drew Pomeranz and Derek Holland. And they’re giving $11 million guaranteed to Matt Harvey? I don’t get it.
In a world where Charlie Morton signed for $15 million annually, it’s hard to justify Harvey getting $11 million guaranteed and potentially up to $14 million. And what’s the point of non-tendering Matt Shoemaker if you’re going to sign Harvey for $11 million guaranteed? They’ll probably give your club the same thing. This is not the kind of move that will keep Mike Trout with the club.