The Angels made four roster moves, including the reinstatement of infielder Matt Duffy from the COVID-related injury list. Right-hander Andrew Wantz was also called up from Triple-A Salt Lake, while infielder Jack Mayfield was optioned to Triple-A, and outfielder Aaron Whitefield was designated for assignment.
After manager Joe Maddon hinted earlier today that Duffy could be activated for the second game of today’s doubleheader with the Athletics, Duffy will indeed be available for the nightcap. Both Mayfield and Whitefield were in the starting lineup for the first game as the right fielder and center fielder, respectively, in a 4-3 Anaheim loss.
Duffy spent two weeks on the IL, and the lack of an injury designation implied that his absence was related to COVID-19. Over his first 41 plate appearances, Duffy was off to a decent start, hitting .278/.366/.306 while getting starts at both second base and first base. This figures to be Duffy’s role going forward, as the veteran will continue to work with Tyler Wade, Andrew Velazquez, and Luis Rengifo in the Angels’ middle infield picture while David Fletcher is sidelined following adductor muscle surgery.
Mayfield had also been seeing some utility duty, while Whitefield played five games in the outfield after Los Angeles selected his contract from Triple-A earlier this week. Whitefield’s previous MLB experience consisted of three games with the Twins in 2020, and in eight pro seasons, the 25-year-old has hit .246/.311/.352 over 1920 PA in the minors with Minnesota and Anaheim. Outfield defense and speed (164 steals in 211 opportunities) were Whitfield’s calling cards in the minors, and another team in need of such a skillset could give the Australian a look on the DFA wire.