Good news out of Halos camp in Tempe, Arizona.
Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com reports that Angels slugger Kendrys Morales is scheduled to make his Cactus League debut Tuesday vs. the Rockies, after he plays one final minor league game Monday.
Morales has been in recovery mode from an ankle injury for nearly 22 months. He took it easy during the first few weeks of spring training this year but began increasing the intensity of his workouts in early March and was recently cleared to begin taking at-bats in minor league exhibition games.
Morales will serve as the Angels’ primary designated hitter this season if he’s healthy. A 28-year-old from Cuba, he earned MVP votes in 2009 after batting .306/.355/.569 with 34 home runs and 108 RBI.
The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.
Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.
Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.