Skip to main content

The Angels swung big at this year's trade deadline adding multiple bats and arms for the team trying to make a playoff push. While the team has struggled mightily since the deadline, one bright spot is coming out of the pen.

Dominic Leone was acquired by the Halos from the New York Mets at the trade deadline. The veteran arm has had a solid overall year but has greatly improved over his last handful of outings.

Angels general manager Perry Minasian noted that Leone's addition to the team was due to his increasing velocity and multiple good outings before the deadline.

That increased velocity culminated in Tuesday night's win where the 31-year-old pitcher tossed two innings to get his first save for his new team.

The 13 fastballs that Leone hurled last night averaged a 97 mph velocity which is the hardest he has thrown in almost a decade.

When asked about the uptick in velocity, the veteran pitcher accounted it to him "feeling good".

“There’s no secret sauce or magic potion that’s made it go up,” Leone said. “I’ve just been feeling good mechanically. I like the way I’m moving down the mound. It’s translated to a small little bump. To be honest, I haven’t even really noticed.”

(via Jeff Fletcher, The Orange County Register)

Leone is feeling good and playing even better. In his five innings for the Halos, Leone has only allowed one run and three hits.

The recent performances that Minasian was alluding to have carried over to Anaheim. In Leone's last 15 innings, he has punched 19 batters out and tossed to the tune of a 1.80 ERA.

This comes at a great time as current Angels closer, Carlos Estevez, has blown back-to-back save opportunities and a possible vacancy in that closing spot may open up. 

With how Leone is tossing the baseball right now, he may fill in for that role for the rest of the year or until Estevez gets his best stuff back.