Kinsler had been battling a groin injury that kept him out of the club’s final two exhibition games of the spring. Though he’d managed to play in last night’s game, the Halos will now be without him for at least ten days.
As part of a busy offseason for the Angels, the club traded two minor-leaguers to the Tigers while agreeing to take on Kinsler’s entire salary for the 2018 season. It was a lauded move for the club considering their second basemen had hit just .207/.274/.318 last year, but they’ll have to wait a bit for the Kinsler boost to kick in.
For the time being, the Halos have a couple of options. Jefry Marte and the newly-recalled Fontana could both get reps at the keystone. The team could also shift fellow offseason acquisition Zack Cozart to second base and give increased playing time to Luis Valbuena.
Fontana, 26, has just 23 MLB plate appearances to his name. His lone hit in the majors came in the form of a home run. He did, however, hit .271/.396/.449 with a whopping 16.6% walk rate at Triple-A last season, so it seems there’s some upside on Fontana’s bat to speak of.