In that “the clubhouse has turned on Bobby V.” story from last week, one of the things that was cited as evidence of the team’s disdain for Valentine was that Dustin Pedroia didn’t join him and the rest of the infield on the mound for a pitching change.
Pedroia would like you all to know that it had nothing to do with Bobby V:
“I swallowed my dip, man,” he said, referencing his chewing tobacco. “Bobby came out and right when I went to take a step I went to take my dip out and I [expletive] swallowed it. Man down. I chilled out right there.
“David [Ortiz] was playing first base and he said, ‘What the [expletive] is wrong with you?’ I told him, ‘I swallowed my dip, man.’”
I assume that Pedroia will now be fined by the league for violating the tobacco policy.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Angels and reliever Cody Allen are in agreement on a one-year contract, pending a physical. The value of the contract is not yet known.
Allen, 30, was looking for an opportunity to close and the Angels can certainly provide that. He will likely be the favorite to break camp as the closer. 2018 was the roughest year of his career, however, as he finished with a 4.70 ERA, 27 saves, and a 80/33 K/BB ratio in 67 innings. Among Allen’s six full seasons, his 27.7 strikeout rate and 11.4 percent walk rate represented career-worsts. FanGraphs also shows him losing nearly a full MPH on his average fastball velocity.
The Angels lost closer Keynan Middleton to Tommy John surgery early last season and he likely won’t return until the second half of the 2019 season. Blake Parker, who handled save situations in Middleton’s place, was non-tendered by the Angels in November and ended up signing with the Twins. The closer’s role is Allen’s to lose, it seems.