Yesterday morning it appeared the Cleveland Indians and Los Angeles Angels were on the verge of completing a trade involving outfielder Bobby Abreu. However, before noontime eastern, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reported that the deal had fallen apart.
Abreu suited up for the Angels spring training contest yesterday, leading many to believe trade talks had either cooled extensively or died altogether.
Abreu’s role with LA is expected to be greatly reduced in 2012 if he does in fact remain with the club. The Indians are in need of an outfielder as Grady Sizemore is set to start the regular season on the disabled list. If Cleveland adds a corner outfielder such as Abreu, their regular left fielder Michael Brantley will shift to center to fill in for Sizemore.
An Abreu trade seemed to make sense for both sides. Thursday, Heyman reported the Indians and Angels were on the verge of reaching an agreement. At that point, Heyman said money was the sticking point; how much the Indians would receive from the Angels to help offset Abreu’s $9 million 2012 salary.
Now it appears Cleveland will have to look elsewhere for outfield support. Some have speculated whether or not the Indians should pursue veteran free agent Johnny Damon. Abreu has played the outfield more regularly than Damon over the past several seasons. But, Damon offered more at the plate than Abreu in 2011 and can be had at a reduced price.