Entering this year’s spring training, reliever Cory Rasmus had one goal on his mind: Make the Los Angeles Angels‘ Opening day roster.
Well so far Rasmus is certainly making a strong case as he thrown five shutout innings in four appearances this spring training. The 26-year-old was acquired at last season’s trade deadline in a deal that sent reliever Scott Downs to the Atlanta Braves in exchange for the young right-hander.
Although the trade looked to be a head scratching move as Downs had a 1.84 ERA through 43 games pitched in 2013, it is now starting to become evident why the Halos acquired Rasmus. They knew he was a project with plenty of upside to his game.
Rasmus initially struggled with his new team, as he posted a 4.20 ERA in 16 games pitched last season, but has since continued to develop as a pitcher as evident by his dominant start to spring training. If he can keep showing that he is progressing this spring training it could possibly lead to getting a roster spot on an Angels’ team that is looking to rebound after an atrocious 2013 season where they ranked in the bottom half in the league in many important statistical pitching categories.
However, Rasmus is not the only pitcher this spring training making a case for a roster spot. A rejuvenated Brandon Lyon is proving he can still be a reliable arm out of the bullpen (0.00 ERA in four innings pitched), and a motivated Michael Kohn,who has also pitched four scoreless innings, making a strong bid for an Opening day roster spot.
Nonetheless, the 26-year-old’s development as pitcher is an encouraging sign for the Halos as he continues to get valuable experience this spring training.