When the Angels signed Albert Pujols earlier in the offseason, first basemen Mark Trumbo and Kendrys Morales joined the designated hitter mix, and Bobby Abreu’s grip on his everyday role seemed to weaken. However, health issues persist for Morales (left ankle) and Trumbo (right foot). GM Jerry Dipoto told Abreu that he will have the chance to earn regular playing time by swinging the bat well this spring, according to Mike DiGiovanna of the LA Times.
“Bobby is an Angel,” Dipoto said. “Right now, he fits on our 25-man roster, in our clubhouse, on our team. Where he is in eight weeks is predicated on how he’s playing and everyone’s health.”
Dipoto has maintained throughout the winter that Abreu is valuable to the Angels, though Ken Rosenthal heard in December that the veteran would welcome a change of scenery. Dipoto told DiGiovanna that Abreu, who turns 38 in March, has not requested a trade.
The left-handed hitter posted a .253/.353/.365 line with 21 stolen bases in 585 plate appearances as the Angels' primary DH last year. He posted the lowest full-season slugging percentage and OPS of his 16-year career. Abreu will earn $9MM in 2012 before becoming a free agent.