News broke out of Nashville this morning that the Washington Nationals have agreed to terms on a one-year, $13 million contract with Dan Haren, officially putting an end to the right-hander’s career as an Angel.
Including the $3.5 million buyout Haren received from the Halos, his salary for next season will be $16.5 million, a cool million more than he would have earned had the Angels picked up his option.
Haren unfortunately finished his 2½-year tenure in Anaheim on a low note, posting a 4.33 ERA and allowing an Ervinian 1.4 long balls per nine over 30 starts in 2012. Bothered by lower back problems* for much of the season, Haren’s velocity dropped precipitously close to the Kazmir-Zito threshold, which would have rendered him wholly ineffective rather than just kind of sucky.
*Amazingly, Dan’s short stint on the disabled list at mid-season was his first trip to the DL in 10 big-league seasons. For pitchers not named Livan Hernandez, that is absolutely unheard of.
Haren’s first season and a half with the Angels were nothing short of spectacular, and those are the memories of the right-hander I will recall when looking back on his brief stint with the club. In his first 48 starts, Haren compiled a 3.09 ERA, 4.63 SO/BB and 0.8 HR/9, rivaling the best stints of his career.
The 32-year-old joins a Nationals staff already loaded with talent. With his one-year, low teens deal, Haren essentially becomes the 2013 version of Edwin Jackson for the Nats. i.e. The club likely has hopes that Haren will return to form and give them the best rotation in baseball, but if he puts together another mediocre season like 2012 it doesn’t matter much because he’s their No. 4 starter.
We here at Halos Daily wish Dan the best of luck in D.C., and are incredibly envious that he gets to be part of a 100-win team, even if for a single season.