Josh Hamilton, who ruled himself out of the previous two Home Run Derbys, said he’d be willing to consider it this time around if approached by team captain David Ortiz.
It was revealed Sunday that Ortiz had approached Jose Bautista and Mark Teixeira for two of the three openings on the squad. Bautista is in, but it’s unclear whether Teixeira will go: he wasn’t named to the AL All-Star roster, so he might prefer to take a few days off instead.
Hamilton, who will be a starter for the AL squad after holding off Jacoby Ellsbury in the fan vote, put on the greatest show in Derby history when he smacked 28 homers in the first round at Yankee Stadium in 2008. Believing the outburst messed up his swing, he made it clear he wasn’t interested in an encore performance in 2009 or 2010.
Free agent outfielder Peter Bourjos is heading back to the Angels on a minor league deal, per a report from Steve Adams of MLB Trade Rumors. The agreement includes an invitation to spring training, but has not yet been officially confirmed by the team.
Bourjos, 31, played out a one-year gig with the Braves in 2018 and slashed .205/.239/.364 with four extra-base hits and a .603 OPS through a career-low 47 plate appearances. He showed more promise during a short-lived stint with the Giants’ Triple-A squad in the second half of the season, but elected free agency in early November and had yet to catch on with another major league club. His deal with the Angels represents a homecoming of sorts, as he played some of the best years of his career in Anaheim from 2010 to 2013 before getting traded to the Cardinals in a multiplayer swap for David Freese and Fernando Salas in 2014.
The veteran outfielder is long past his prime, but could still bring some value to the team as outfield depth behind Justin Upton, Mike Trout, and Kole Calhoun. Per Adams, he’s expected to compete for a spot as the Angels’ fourth outfielder, though he also has limited experience at DH as well.