The February 28th, 2012 edition of daily news for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim including Abreu gets a promise of 400 plate appearances, Bourjos to have hip surgery after the season, Morales takes another step forward in his rehab and much more…
The Monkey Says: This transcript is full of nuggets. First off, the mere fact that Bobby already had a big meeting with the manager about playing time proves that he is not going to stop grumbling about playing time at all this year. Even if he gets his 400 plate appearances, it doesn’t sound like he is going to be too happy with it and will probably complain about it the first he doesn’t get into a game for three or four days in a row. Of course, he buttons the interview by saying he doesn’t want to be a distraction while strongly intimating that he wants to be traded. Bobby, news flash: you are being a distraction. This is going to be a big problem and part of me wonders if the Halos gave Abreu this playing time promise to keep him quiet until they can find a trade partner to take him off their hands. The reason I say this is that there just doesn’t seem to be 400 plate appearances readily available for him. To find those PAs, Vernon Wells might have to be reduced to a part-time player (in which case they should call up Trout) or Kendrys Morales would have to sit pretty regularly (in which Mark Trumbo will struggle to get any playing time) or all three outfielders are going to have to sit a lot more than expected. The math just doesn’t add up to make this kind of promise.
The Monkey Says: Plagued was probably the wrong word to use, but I couldn’t find my thesaurus. Speedy Petey has been dealing with this for years and it has had no effect on his performance. If there were any risk of this having a major impact on his health, the Angels surely would’ve had him undergo the surgery during the off-season even if it meant missing training camp.
The Monkey Says: So far, so good. The team is even already talking about having him run the bases within two weeks, which sounds as if it is the final step in his running program before he is going to be cleared to play in actual games. Two weeks, people. Cross your fingers.
The Monkey Says: Get him a statue of Jobu and Trumbo essentially becomes a white version of Pedro Cerrano. I am assuming that this mandate is only for spring training games, because if Mark refuses to swing at breaking balls, pitchers are going to exploit that pretty quickly.
The Monkey Says: Yes, Callaspo can be useful. This might be a shock to some of you. However, I do see what Scioscia is going for. Callaspo’s offense was buoyed last season on an OBP that was higher than normal for him, so he is likely to be worse with the bat this year. On the flip side, Trumbo has a greater chance of exceeding his production from last year and sustaining it, meaning there is a good chance that he will have a significant offensive advantage over Callaspo. If Trumbo can hold his own at third and play there part-time (say when flyballers like Weaver, Santana and Haren are on the mound, thus reducing the number of groundballs Mark would have to field), then Scioscia might be able to mix the two and get optimal production both on the field and in the batter’s box.
The Monkey Says: Having read this, I have never been so glad that baseball has the built-in team control for the first several years of a player’s career.
The Monkey Says: That is with the possible exception of Brad Mills who probably was wondering if Mike Scioscia already had it in for him when he drew the assignment of throwing batting practice for Pujols. “Welcome to the club, kid. Now go out there and get lit up by Pujols.”
The Monkey Says: And mooch some free dinner off of him, apparently. It really is nice to see a veteran Angel outfielder possibly heading into the final year of his career embracing his situation and still approaching the game with the enthusiasm of a young child. Hint, hint, Bobby.
The Monkey Says: They are too off-beat to be used in games though. His teammates loved them so much that he even bought some for Bobby Wilson, Hank Conger and… oh… Tyler Chatwood… that’s going to be awkward.
The Monkey Says: It certainly couldn’t hurt.
The Monkey Says: Happy retirement, Bengie.
The Monkey Says: This was inevitable now that Ryan Zimmerman signed a long-term extension with the Nationals. I don’t think these Bourjos-to-the-Nats ideaas are ever going to stop. For the record, this trade idea is worth considering since Rendon could be a special bat, but he is just too far from the majors and the Halos are looking to win now, not in 2015.