HomeMLB RumorsAngels To Sign Matt Moore

Angels To Sign Matt Moore

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The Angels are in agreement with reliever Matt Moore on a $9MM contract, reports Jon Heyman of the New York Post (X link). Moore, a client of Apex Baseball, will sign with the Halos for a second straight offseason. He inked a one-year, $7.55MM deal with the Angels last winter.

The first run in Anaheim was a good one for the now 34-year-old Moore, who’s enjoying a nice second act of his career since moving to the bullpen. In 44 innings with the Angels during the 2023 season, the veteran southpaw notched an excellent 2.66 earned run average. Moore logged a strong 28% strikeout rate against a lower-than-average 6.9% walk rate.

The Halos wound up waiving Moore in August, but not due to his performance. Rather, the Angels made a last-ditch effort to get under the luxury tax threshold with a mass waiver purge just weeks after an aggressive, win-now trade deadline. Moore, Lucas Giolito, Reynaldo Lopez, Hunter Renfroe, Randal Grichuk, Dominic Leone and Tyler Anderson all wound up on waivers in hopes that another club would take their contracts (not all were claimed).

Moore was quickly snapped up by the Guardians as they made their own last-minute push, claiming Giolito in addition to Moore. His stint with Cleveland only lasted 4 2/3 innings, as the Guards waived Moore themselves to save some cash after they, too, fell out of postseason contention. The Marlins scooped Moore up and enjoyed four shutout innings for him down the stretch.

Overall, Moore finished out a bizarre 2023 season with a 2.56 ERA, 27.5% strikeout rate and vastly improved 6.9% walk rate in 52 2/3 innings between the three teams. That marked Moore’s second consecutive year of productive pitching following a move to the bullpen. He turned in a 1.95 ERA for the Rangers in 2022 after signing a minor league deal. When combining the two seasons, Moore touts a 2.20 ERA with five saves, 36 holds, a 27.4% strikeout rate and 10.3% walk rate in 126 2/3 innings.

It’s a strong second act for the southpaw, who’d struggled as a starter for the few seasons preceding his bullpen move. It has clearly impressed Halos GM Perry Minasian and his staff, who have added him on a notable one-year pact in consecutive years. That’s in line with a broad willingness to attack the relief corps on free agency.

Los Angeles has signed five relievers this winter. Their first three acquisitions — Luis GarciaAdam Kolarek and Adam Cimber — were fairly modest one-year deals. In recent days, they’ve been more aggressive. The Angels finalized a three-year, $33MM pact with Robert Stephenson this afternoon. Moore adds a lefty option to a relief group that otherwise figures to lean heavily on righties Carlos Estevez, Stephenson, Garcia, Ben Joyce and Jose Soriano.

The Angels are now up to roughly $172MM in payroll commitments for the upcoming season, as calculated by Roster Resource. That’s still well shy of last year’s $212MM Opening Day mark. Minasian and his staff very likely aren’t finished. They’ve been tied to various possibilities in both the lineup and the starting rotation. There’s still opportunity for the Angels to continue adding in the next few weeks.

Image courtesy of USA Today Sports.

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