Angels owner says GM Jerry Dipoto “has complete power”

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In the wake of Tony Reagins stepping down as Angels general manager there were reports about how manager Mike Scioscia was truly running the show, but in introducing Jerry Dipoto yesterday owner Arte Moreno said the new GM “has complete power.”

Here’s what Dipoto said about Scioscia’s influence on roster moves:

I didn’t wake up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat wondering if I was going to get steamrolled by Mike. At no time did this become a sticking point for me. I’ve worked in this business my entire adult life, for 24 years, and what might look unusual outside the league is very common to me. I love the opinion of baseball people. I love talking to strong-minded people.

And here’s what Scioscia had to say:

Jerry will get opinions from me, sometimes strong opinions. Sometimes he’ll act on them, sometimes he won’t. That’s how we’ve worked for 12 years.

It’s interesting how the quote progression works there. The owner says the new GM “has complete power.” The new GM says he welcomes opinions from the longtime manager. And the longtime manager says he plans to give the new GM plenty of strong opinions. Not quite a disconnect, but Dipoto truly having “complete power” without any influence from Scioscia is a tough sell at this point.

Video: Jake Arrieta hits a 465-foot home run off of Zack Greinke

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Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.

The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.

Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.

Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.

Luis Valbuena to miss four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring

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Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.

Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.

Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.