Kendry Morales is finally back from his ankle operations and is a much better option at DH than Abreu, who is coming off a down season hitting .253, 8, 60 for the Angels last season. Factor in that Mark Trumbo will be more of a utility player as opposed to being the regular 3B, as initially spoken about, it seems less likely Abreu will get the 400 plate appearances manager Mike Scioscia suggests he will get. And since this is a team poised for success, they should and will move quick to try and trade Abreu.
The Angels, at this point, only have Jerome Williams and Garrett Richards as fifth starter candidates, and would prefer to upgrade if they can. One place Abreu is not going to is Washington, who do not have a place in the corner OF with Michael Morse and Jayson Werth. Yes, the Nationals are shopping LHP John Lannan, but they would prefer a CF-type such as Bourjos, who the Angels are not looking to move. Wade Davis will be pitching in the bullpen for the Tampa Bay Rays. While the Rays could use Abreu's bat, it is unlikely Tampa Bay sees Abreu as equal value for Davis. Without further due, here is five potential trade possibilities for Abreu, with number one being the best fit.
5: To New York Yankees for RHP Freddy Garcia- This is my fifth proposition because it seems like the Yankees roster is already set. It intriques me because it seems like an answer to two questions of what to do with two extra players. Garcia may become expendable with the signing of Andy Pettitte with Phil Hughes an option until Pettitte is ready. The Yankees were interested in bringing back Abreu before they traded AJ Burnett to the Pirates and signed OF Raul Ibanez. They also brought back INF Eric Chavez so it is difficult to imagine a scenario where Abreu would get adequate playing time. The Angels would also have to offset the salaries of the two players. The only way this trade works for the Yankees is if they look to eventually move a player such as Nick Swisher or Raul Ibanez. Otherwise, I don't see this happening. I wouldn't be surprised, though, if the Angels reach out again to the Yankees, just in case.
4. To Detroit Tigers for LHP Phil Coke- In this scenario, the Angels may be short-changing themselves. Coke was a starting pitcher last season and was not in the discussion to be a starter this spring, even though the Tigers do not have a set fifth starter themselves. Abreu would be a fit for Detroit, who could use a DH with Miguel Cabrera playing 3B and Ryan Raburn possibly playing 2B. Whether the Angels accept Coke in this trade will be determined by how badly the Angels feels they need to move Abreu. Coke would probably be stretched out again to be a starter, otherwise he may not be a fit, due to the Angels already having LHPs Scott Downs and Hisanori Takahashi. I don't know if this solves the Angels' 5th starter question.
3. To Baltimore Orioles for RHP Jason Hammel- The Orioles have a need for a DH and Hammel would be an adequate get for the Angels as a fifth starter. I'm sure the Angels would have to pay some of Abreu's salary and the Orioles may be apprehensive since they just acquired Hammel from the Rockies in the Jeremy Guthrie trade. But, Abreu is an upgrade over Wilson Betemit, who is more suited to be a utility player.
2. To Philadelphia Phillies for RHP Joe Blanton- This was the other part of a three way trade involving the Yankees. Abreu would have gone to the Yankees, with Burnett going to the Phillies and Blanton going to the Angels. With Burnett out of the picture, how about a trade between the Angels and the Phillies? Abreu played for the Phillies for a while after being acquired from the Houston Astros organization. The Phillies have some questions over how they will replace Ibanez in LF, with probable LF John Mayberry probably seeing a lot of time at 1B, with Ryan Howard starting the season on the DL. Blanton is expendable with Kyle Kendrick and Scott Elarton possibilities to be the fifth starter in Philadelphia. This trade could work for both teams as well as force Abreu to get off to a good start, or risk losing playing time and perhaps his job when Howard returns.
1. To Cleveland Indians for Roberto Hernandez Heradia- This would be contingent on the former Fausto Carmona being re-instated into baseball. If and when this happens, it seems Heradia and the Indians will part ways. The Indians have a need, more of a corner OF need, which Abreu would be able to fill. Michael Brantley has moved from LF to CF with Grady Sizemore starting the season on the DL. Abreu can play LF and occasionally DH, though they still have Travis Hafner. As long as he is cleared to pitch, Heradia is a solid choice to be the 5th starter in LA.