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Veteran pitcher Doug Fister signed Thursday with the Los Angeles Angels after going through the offseason without finding a deal.
Chris Cotillo of SB Nation’s MLB Daily Dish blog reported the news. Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times confirmed the move.
Fister, 33, went 12-13 with a 4.64 ERA, 1.43 WHIP and 115 strikeouts in 180.1 innings and 32 starts for the Houston Astros in 2016. While his ERA and WHIP have ballooned in the past two years, he’s remained a solid innings-eater at the back end of the rotation, leaving him a valuable contributor on most pitching staffs.
Fister was having a strong 2016 season before he struggled mightily down the stretch, going 0-5 with a 10.54 ERA in his final seven starts.
After his final start, Fister evaluated his season, per Jordan Ray of MLB.com:
There’s been a lot of up and downs, but no matter good or bad, there’s always something to pull from it. There’s a lot of things to learn from negatives and some failure. That’s something I will take from this year. I’ll look back on it, know how to grind through it, and coming back on top is something I’ll have to continue to work on.
The Angels will be banking on the fact that they’ve acquired the pitcher who started the season 12-8 with a 3.59 ERA following his Aug. 22 start, not the pitcher who slumped after that date. If that player reemerges, the Angels will have landed one of the sneakier signings of free agency.
If nothing else, he’ll provide a solid option as the team’s fourth or fifth starter.
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