Angels General Manager Jerry Dipoto made a move Thursday to improve the team’s shaky bullpen, acquiring right-hander Ernesto Frieri from the San Diego Padres for minor league utility player Alexi Amarista and pitcher Donn Roach.
Frieri, who will join the Angels Friday, usually pitched in the sixth and seventh innings for the Padres, going 3-3 with a 2.33 earned-run average in 105 games over the last four seasons. The 26-year-old struck out 137 and walked 56 in 108 innings and has what Dipoto calls a lively 93-mph fastball.
“He’s deceptive and has a history of missing bats,” Dipoto said. “He has what I call a ‘magic’ fastball. It cuts, it runs, it sinks — it moves in different directions and is hard to hit.”
Angels relievers haven’t missed many bats, combining for an 0-6 record and 5.08 ERA and blowing six of their first seven save opportunities. Veteran left-hander Scott Downs, who replaced struggling right-hander Jordan Walden as the team’s closer last week, has been the only consistently effective bullpen arm.