Guerrero, 33 in January, has 106 innings of major league experience but hasn’t appeared in the bigs since 2019. He signed a minor league deal with the Reds going into 2023 but was released in June after posting a dreadful 11.51 earned run average in 22 2/3 innings. That’s a small sample of work and the ERA was surely inflated by unlucky numbers in terms of batting average on balls in play and runners stranded, but he also walked more batters than he struck out.
After being released, he caught on with the Diablos Rojos del Mexico of the Mexican League. He posted a 1.17 ERA there, but in an even smaller sample of 7 2/3 innings. He then joined Naranjeros de Hermosillo for some winter ball in Mexico. He has a 1.10 ERA in 16 1/3 innings for that club, striking out 26 of the 65 batters he has faced while walking 7, respective rates of 40% and 10.8%. Romero relays that Guerrero hit 101.6 mph on the radar gun.
That velocity has long been an enticing part of the package with Guerrero but he hasn’t always been able to harness it. He walked 13.6% of batters faced in his brief major league tenure and 18.8% of Triple-A hitters when with the Reds in 2023. He has been in better form since being released and heading to Mexico, as he didn’t issue any walks for the Diablos and then had a reasonable rate with the Naranjeros.
For the Angels, there’s no risk in bringing him aboard via a minor league deal and seeing what his control looks like early in the year. If everything is clicking, perhaps Guerrero can earn his way onto a roster spot, though he is now out of options and can’t be sent back down to the minors without being exposed to waivers.