When Albert Pujols played a couple of games at third base last year it was rather unusual and unexpected. But the fact that he did OK there and didn’t hurt anything will make it easier for Mike Scioscia to make out his lineup card for interleague play in NL parks with greater peace of mind:
Manager Mike Scioscia said Saturday that Pujols will move from first to third and [Kendrys] Morales will play defense for the first time this season when the Angels play interleague games at Colorado next weekend and in Dodger Stadium next week, turning what was considered a possibility two weeks ago into a concrete plan.
Of course the Pujols at third base part of this is less notable, I think, than the Morales at first base part. Because has hasn’t played in the field since he broke his leg over two years ago.
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.