The Angels agreed to terms with hard-throwing right-hander Carlos Estevez on a two-year, $13.5 million deal.
Estevez had the best season of his career with the Colorado Rockies in 2022. Estevez, 29, posted a 3.47 ERA in 57 innings, striking out 54. For his six-season career, Estevez has a 4.59 ERA, but that includes a 3.51 ERA outside of Coors Field.
Last season Esteves had a 1.40 ERA in the second half.
“I think the quality of the strikes was better,” Colorado Rockies manager Bud Black said. “First-pitch strike consistency, keeping the ball down when needed, elevating when needed against certain hitters, certain counts. He commanded his slider and change more consistently in the strike zone. He’s been pretty consistent the last couple years, but the second half of last year was really solid.”
The Angels have been working to upgrade their bullpen, which has no established closer since they traded Raisel Iglesias last season.
Esteves has 25 career saves. Black said he believes that Esteves had the stuff to be a close, but the Rockies had other successful pitchers in that role over the past few years.
“We haven’t needed Carlos to step up and be that closer but for me he does have closer mentality,” Black said.
Esteves now joins a bullpen that includes right-handers Jimmy Herget, Ryan Tepera, Andrew Wantz and Jaime Barria, and left-handers Aaron Loup and José Quijada.
More to come on this story.