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Monday, November 22, 2021

Angels sign LHP Aaron Loup

The Angels today have agreed to terms on a two-year, $17 million contract with LHP Aaron Loup ($7.5 million in 2022 and $7.5 million in 2023). The contract also includes a Club option for the 2024 season ($7.5 million or $2 million dollar buyout).

Loup, 33, made 65 appearances in 2021 for the New York Mets, going 6-0 with a 0.95 ERA (56.2 IP – 6 ER) and 57 strikeouts. He led all Major League relief pitchers in ERA (min. 50 IP) and held opponents to a career-best .192 (37/193) batting average, which ranked third among National League left-handers. Loup held left-handed batters to a .167 (14/84) average and yielded just two extra-base hits to lefties on the season.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 22, 2021 at 06:02 PM | 16 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: aaron loup, angels

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   1. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: November 22, 2021 at 06:52 PM (#6054101)
First they take Syndergaard, and now Loup? $#%@#!

That's a lot of money for a middle reliever but at some point you have to start spending money to field a decent team. It will be interesting to see where Cohen / Eppler decide to do so.
   2. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 22, 2021 at 07:24 PM (#6054109)
This is wild.

Joe Blanton was the last free agent pitcher the Angels signed to a multiyear deal, in December 2012.
   3. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: November 22, 2021 at 08:09 PM (#6054116)
Jeez. Bullpen Droids are expensive these days.
   4. Walt Davis Posted: November 23, 2021 at 12:57 AM (#6054164)
#1 and #3 ... not really. It depends on how you view Loup -- who, like many relievers, has had amazing and mediocre seasons and has also been hurt. But over 2020-21, a 283 ERA+ and 2.87 FIP (just 81 IP, another issue with assessing/projecting relievers). Granted, the name Aaron Loup does not strike fear into my heart but what do I know?

So if you think he's an elite setup guy or fringe elite ... that's what these guys have cost for some time. Top closers cost about $15-16 AAV and top set-up guys cost $9-11. Back in 2020, the Mets signed Betances for what amounted to either 1/$10 or 2/$14 after essentially not pitching at all in 2019.

OK, that's the Mets. But the Cubs paid 2/$13 for Cishek in 2018. Houston gave Pressly (not a closer at the time) 2/$17 with a vesting option in 2020. The Braves gave Chris Martin 2/$14 in 2020. Archie Bradley got $6 and Hector Neris $5 in their last arb years. The Nats are 2 years through 3/$24 for Will Harris but have finished Daniel Hudson's 2/$11. Joe Kelly got 3/$27 out of the Dodgers in 2019 and Blake Treinen re-signed for 2/$17.5 in 2021. Drew Pomeranz's agent talked the Padres into 4/$34 in 2020 -- he has been awesome in his 44 innings.

Or maybe you meant a lot as in "paid like a top reliever when he's probably not one."
   5. Walt Davis Posted: November 23, 2021 at 01:03 AM (#6054165)
On reliever salaries generally -- if you could reliably project relievers, they would make sense to me. $15 M for a top closer, $8-9 M for a top setup, $4-5 M for a good #3. That would be $27-30 M for about 200 innings of 140-150 ERA+. On the SP market, that SP is gonna cost you $35 M or maybe more per year and you're gonna have to lock him up for 6-7 years. And you can leverage the reliever innings. The problem is how often your closer goes Kimbrel, your setup guy gets hurt and your good #3 turns into a #5 while some kid you're paying nothing puts up a 175 ERA+ for 120 innings. After a while you start to wonder if there is such a thing as a reliable reliever and whether you're better off with 8 kids and retreads.
   6. Dr. Pooks Posted: November 23, 2021 at 05:59 AM (#6054172)
Aaron Loup's numbers with Toronto are a lot better than I would have guessed (ERA 3.47, ERA+ 120, FIP 3.40).

I would say that every Blue Jay fan is absolutely shocked by this contract though.

It seemed the 2015-2018 version of Loup had a 50/50 shot of either plunking or walking the lefty he was brought in to get out.

I struggle to think of the last Jays reliever who left the team for success elsewhere that came with some regret.

Brett Cecil retired recently and was awful for his 4 years in STL. Robert Osuna isn't in the league anymore AFAIK. Ken Giles is recovering from surgery on a two-year deal with ?Seattle.

Miguel Castro at 20 was the Jays' closer for about a week and has bounced all around the league in disappointing fashion. Jason Grilli, Joaquin Benoit and Drew Storen aren't in the league anymore.

I'm not sure what it says about your bullpen when the closest thing to "the one that got away" in recent memory is probably Daniel Hudson for the Nationals.

   7. Rally Posted: November 23, 2021 at 08:55 AM (#6054198)
Liam Hendriks.

I continued to be amazed at how long it took him to be a free agent. 3 years with the Twins. Granted they were not full seasons, but add up to 156 innings. 2014 split between Toronto and KC, though much of it was in the minors. A full 2015 season in the Jay’s bullpen. Then traded to Oakland. And somehow it takes him 5 more years there to get his 6 official service time years.
   8. Rally Posted: November 23, 2021 at 08:56 AM (#6054199)
His teammate Tepera has done well since leaving the Jays too.
   9. Rally Posted: November 23, 2021 at 08:59 AM (#6054201)
Should we count veterans traded at the deadline? In 2019 Daniel Hudson made the Jays after impressing in spring training, don’t think his contract was guaranteed. He ended up closing the world series for the Nats.
   10. The Duke Posted: November 23, 2021 at 08:59 AM (#6054202)
Angels sign more pitching. Writers complain: not this pitching at this price !

   11. Paul d mobile Posted: November 23, 2021 at 09:16 AM (#6054209)
Prepare for so many hit batters.
   12. Harmon "Thread Killer" Microbrew Posted: November 23, 2021 at 09:22 AM (#6054210)
40 career HBP in a little over 400 IP. Didn't sound that high until I looked at the rate for his closest comps. Seems the norm would be between 10 and 20.
   13. Paul d mobile Posted: November 23, 2021 at 09:55 AM (#6054216)
Every ball to a left handed hitter seems fractions of an inch from hitting him. And many do.
   14. Dr. Pooks Posted: November 23, 2021 at 01:23 PM (#6054267)
Liam Hendriks

Good call Rally. I forgot about Hendriks.

The Jays actually gave up on Hendriks twice: trading him to KC once for Danny Valencia and then a second time to OAK for a reborn Jesse Chavez.

Jays fans caterwauled for years for trading 4 years of Hendriks in relief for 1 year of Chavez as a swingman.

In the end, they were right. But I still think you should trade relievers for starters whenever you can instead of worrying whether some of them might turn into a Hendriks.
   15. Dr. Pooks Posted: November 23, 2021 at 01:27 PM (#6054269)
His teammate Tepera has done well since leaving the Jays too.

Tepera has done a lot better since being cut from the Jays than I would have predicted as well.

I don't really mourn his departure though. He had a late debut in the league at 27 and is just a generic RH middle reliever.

The Jays have twice been able to pick up a Tepera clone in David Phelps for nothing but money, though older and more prone to being out of service.
   16. Random Transaction Generator Posted: November 23, 2021 at 01:32 PM (#6054272)
His teammate Tepera has done well since leaving the Jays too.

He did get an MVP vote, after all.

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