By Mike DiGiovanna
9:29 AM AKST, November 30, 2012
The Angels have acquired starting pitcher Tommy Hanson from the Atlanta Braves for reliever Jordan Walden, according to a person familiar with the trade but unauthorized to speak publicly about it.
Hanson, a 26-year-old right-hander from Redlands East Valley High School, had a 45-32 career record and 3.61 earned-run average in four seasons with the Braves and went 13-10 with a 4.48 ERA, 161 strikeouts and 71 walks in 174 2/3 innings in 2012.
He will provide much-needed rotation depth for a team that before Friday had only two starters, Jered Weaver and C.J. Wilson, under contract for 2013 and one, rookie right-hander Garrett Richards, under club control. The team must decide by 9 p.m. whether to tender a contract to right-hander Jerome Williams.
Because he is entering his first year of arbitration, Hanson will be under club control for three more years, and he is projected to earn a salary of about $4 million this season.
Walden, a 24-year-old right-hander with a 98-mph fastball, was the Angels’ closer in 2011, going 5-5 with a 2.98 ERA and 32 saves, but he was slowed by a shoulder injury last season and relegated to middle relief, going 3-2 with a 3.46 ERA in 45 games.
Wednesday’s signing of closer Ryan Madson made Walden a little more expendable. The Angels are also pursuing Japanese closer Kyuji Fujikawa, who is believed to have narrowed his choice down to the Angels, Chicago Cubs and Arizona Diamondbacks.