After signing Jered Weaver to a five-year, $85 million deal over the weekend, the Angels have shown their confidence in Weaver as a staff ace, and a commitment to keeping their own. The deal that will pay Weaver $17 million a season is said to have been smaller than what Weaver could have fetched on the free-agent market, but why ruin a good thing?
First and foremost, Weaver is a hometown kid. He grew up in California, not too far from the Angels' home stadium in Anaheim, and played his college ball at Long Beach State (Long Beach, CA). The Angels were wise in keeping this homegrown product local.
Weaver is also a legitimate staff ace anywhere in baseball. His deceiving delivery has baffled hitters since his arrival to the majors in 2006. In just six short seasons in the majors, Weaver has already led the league in strikeouts (233 in 2010), and this season leads the heavy-hitting AL with an ERA of 2.10.
And he's only getting better! He's beginning to learn how to pitch. He's beginning to understand the mental approach to the game, which is only going to make him a more complete pitcher in the long run.
One thing is for certain: With Weaver atop the Angels rotation for the next five seasons and presumably beyond, the Angels will keep themselves in the thick of the things in the AL West.
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