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Angels Designate Junior Guerra For Assignment

The Angels announced they’ve designated reliever Junior Guerra for assignment. The move opens a spot on the 40-man roster for the recently-signed Noah Syndergaard.

Guerra had been eligible for arbitration. Had the Angels tendered him a contract, he’d have been in line for a salary in the $1.3MM range, in the estimation of MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz. Coming off a disappointing 2021 campaign, Guerra looked like a non-tender candidate. Today’s designation will indeed function as something of an early non-tender, as he’ll be eligible for minor league free agency if he passes through waivers unclaimed.

From 2016-19, Guerra had a generally solid run as a swingman with the Brewers. He’s scuffled over the past couple seasons since leaving Milwaukee, though. While Guerra posted a solid 3.04 ERA over 23 2/3 frames with the D-Backs in 2020, his peripherals were less impressive. Arizona released him after the season, and the Angels signed the veteran to a minor league deal in January.

Guerra cracked the season-opening roster and spent the entire year in Anaheim, but he didn’t fare particularly well. The 36-year-old pitched to a career-worst 6.06 ERA over 65 1/3 innings of long relief. That came with a subpar 19.9% strikeout percentage and a far too high 15% walk rate, Guerra’s third consecutive season issuing free passes to more than 10% of opposing hitters.

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