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Bobby Abreu: Veteran Outfielder Signs with L.A. Dodgers

ANAHEIM, CA - AUGUST 20:  Bobby Abreu #53 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim celebrates after hitting a walk off sacxrifice fly in the 12 th inning to win the game against the Baltimore Orioles on August 20, 2011 at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California. The Angels won 9-8 in 12 innings.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images
Mike ChiariFeatured ColumnistMay 4, 2012

It didn't take long for veteran outfielder Bobby Abreu to land on his feet after being cut by the Los Angeles Angels last week. He won't even have to move his belongings very far—if at all—as he has agreed to terms with the Los Angeles Dodgers, according to Ken Gurnick of MLB.com

Although he's a career .293 hitter, the 38-year-old Abreu had fallen on hard times with the Angels. He was hitting just .208 this season in limited playing time prior to his release. The Angels decided to cut ties with Abreu mainly because of the ascent of stud prospect Mike Trout, who they called up late last week.

It's obvious that Abreu's skills have been in decline in recent years, but he can still be a useful player. He hasn't hit better than .255 over the past two seasons, but he has stolen at least 21 bases in 13 straight seasons, and hit 20 home runs as recently as 2010.

Abreu could very well enter a platoon situation with Juan Rivera in left field, as Rivera would handle left-handed pitching and Abreu would play against righties. With the way that Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier have been hitting, this looks to be the perfect situation for Abreu, as he's not expected to be a main contributor.

Abreu has hit all over the lineup during the course of his career, but the most logical fit would be hitting second, ahead of Kemp and Ethier, or hitting fifth or sixth, depending upon where the Dodgers decide to slot James Loney. 

Whatever the case, this is a low-risk, high-reward signing for the surprising Dodgers. Abreu's veteran leadership should only help them as they contend for an NL West title.

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