Angels sign Mike Trout: One year, $1 million
The Angels signed outfielder Mike Trout to a one-year, $1-million contract on Wednesday, avoiding the rancor of the renewal process and setting the stage for agreement on a long-term extension later this spring. By setting Trout's 2014 salary now, the Angels can start the long-term deal in 2015.
That enables the Angels to avoid a luxury-tax assessment this season. Trout, 22, finished second in American League Most Valuable Player voting in each of his first two full seasons. He and the Angels are discussing an extension reported in the range of six years and $150 million. That would allow the Angels to buy out his first three years of free agency and allow Trout to become a free agent at 29. Craig Landis, the agent for Trout, criticized the Angels last year after they unilaterally renewed his contract for $510,000.
The Angels could pay Trout whatever they liked this year and last, because he has fewer than three years of major league service. If he and the Angels do not complete the long-term deal, Trout would be eligible for salary arbitration for the first time next season.
Wilson struck on head in BP at Angels camp
Angels starter C.J. Wilson was struck in the left side of the head by a comebacker off the bat of Yorvit Torrealba during live batting practice at one of the back fields at the Tempe Diablo Stadium complex Tuesday. Wilson sprang back to his feet, told everyone he's fine and wanted to throw the 10 pitches that remained in his session. But the 33-year-old left-hander had some bleeding and was instead carted off the field, leaving to undergo a precautionary CT scan.
Wilson was texting back-and-forth with general manager Jerry Dipoto throughout and posted a lighthearted message on his Twitter account shortly thereafter, writing: "Everything is fine, except that pitch I threw. Shoulda caught it." "He was very cognizant; he was aware of what was going on, what was happening, and never lost consciousness," Dipoto said. "The initial read is that neurologically he is fine." Scioscia gets 14-game test run on new replay rules play video Torre talks impact replay will have on umpires, game Facebook Twitter Email TEMPE, Ariz. -- Mike Scioscia was among those who met Monday with Joe Torre, MLB's executive vice president of baseball operations, regarding expanded instant replay. Asked how the meeting went, the Angels' manager said: "Obviously informative.
There's a whole list of things that are reviewable and things that aren't, that can be challenged and not challenged. We'll just have to get up to speed on that and go from there." Scioscia should get plenty of practice during Spring Training. The Angels will be using all Cactus League games to get up to speed internally with how they'll go about determining which calls to challenge in-season. In addition, Major League Baseball has designated a variety of Spring Training games as "replay games," where managers will be given challenges in order to practice. A dress rehearsal, of sorts.
Under the new rules, each manager starts the game with one challenge. If it's upheld, he retains it. But mainly because of pace-of-game concerns, he can't have more than two challenges in a game. Everything besides obstruction, interference and strike-zone calls are now reviewable. Boundary calls and home-plate collisions, in tune with the new ruling that was announced Monday, cannot be challenged but can be reviewed under an umpire's discretion, Scioscia said. Other calls can't be reviewed under an umpire's discretion until the start of the seventh inning.
• Angels ace Jered Weaver is slated to start the Cactus League opener against the Cubs on Friday and will probably pitch as long as three innings. The Angels have yet to announce how the order will play out after Weaver, and C.J. Wilson's line drive to the head on Tuesday could certainly impact it.
• Manager Mike Scioscia called the new regulations for home-plate collisions -- where runners can't deviate from their direct path in order to make contact with the catcher, and catchers must give the runner a direct path if they don't have possession of the ball -- "a work in progress," but he doesn't think it'll change much for catchers. "I think the distinction is going to be to make sure you have the ball in your possession," Scioscia said, "and you have to stay closer to the tag lane because you have to wait for the ball longer."
Hamilton on crutches with left calf strain
Outfielder Josh Hamilton strained his left calf during a baserunning drill on Tuesday morning and will have to be off his feet for at least the next few days. Hamilton, sporting crutches in the Angels' clubhouse, said it "grabbed me good," but that he's "not concerned about it."
For now, he will "ease off for a couple days and then reassess where we're at; play it by ear and go a week at a time." Asked if his recovery will take weeks or days, Hamilton said: "If you ask me in four to five days, I'll know better. But right now, I can't tell you. We have to get it to the point that the spasm releases, and we can reassess and evaluate it good." Hamilton couldn't straighten out his leg while talking to reporters and said he'll have to use the crutches "for a couple days."
Coming off a down 2013 season, the first of a five-year, $125 million contract with the Angels, Hamilton had put himself back at his customary 240 pounds, and many in camp were raving about how much better his swing looked. The latest setback hasn't diminished Hamilton's optimism about 2014. "It is going to be a great year," he said. "I know it is. I believe it is. There have been times in the past where I tweaked something in Spring Training and missed a week and had a great year. I have a good attitude about what's ahead."