Angels Manager Mike Scioscia argues with home plate umpire Dana Demuth… (Paul Connors / Associated…)
TEMPE, Ariz. — — Thursday's exhibition game between the Angels and Kansas City — an 11-8 Angels victory — did nothing to improve relations between Angels Manager Mike Scioscia and Royals Manager Ned Yost.
After the Royals scored seven runs in the first two innings, the Angels countered in the bottom of the second with consecutive home runs by Kendrys Morales, Mark Trumbo and Hank Conger. Everett Teaford's next pitch hit Peter Bourjos, which raised the ire of the center fielder and the Angels' dugout.
"I don't think any of us liked that," Scioscia said. "Our guy [Eric Hurley] was getting knocked around in the first inning, and we didn't throw at anybody. You try to make better pitches. It was uncalled for."
Teaford wanted to come up and in on Bourjos but said there was no "malicious intent" to hit him.
"He's on top of the plate, and I feel he even leaned into it some," Teaford said. "It went straight to the backstop, so it wasn't like I squared him up in the back. I guess they don't like to be pitched up and in. That's part of the game sometimes.
"I wasn't trying to hit him in the head. They were mad. Sorry, I guess, but not really sorry."
These teams open the regular season in Angel Stadium next Friday night, so it will be interesting to see if hostilties continue.
The Yost-Scioscia feud goes back to the spring of 2007, when Yost, then the Milwaukee manager, filed a protest with the commissioner's office after the Angels, for the second straight year, sent a team of minor leaguers to Maryvale for the Cactus League finale while their regulars played that night in Anahiem.
A few weeks later, when snow forced an Angels-Indians series to be moved from Cleveland to Milwaukee, Yost locked his manager's office in Miller Park so Scioscia couldn't use it.
Then, in the spring of 2008, Yost sent a lineup of triple-A players and major league reserves to Tempe to play the Angels. Rules require teams to bring at least four position players who were regulars the previous year or had a "reasonable chance" of being regulars in the current season to spring road games.
Going, going …
The Angels may have found a taker for disgruntled outfielder Bobby Abreu, who, according to several Internet reports, is on the verge of being traded to the Cleveland Indians
Peter Greenberg, the agent for the 38-year-old veteran, said in a text message Thursday night that he hadn't received confirmation about a deal, and neither the Angels nor Indians would comment.
The Angels are expected to pay most, if not all, of Abreu's $9-million salary in any trade, but a transaction of that size must be approved by Major League Baseball, one potential holdup to a deal.
Abreu's potential role with the Angels seemed to shrink with every weak at-bat — he's hitting .087 (4 for 46) this spring — and every hit by Morales, who is 10 for 16 with two homers and is poised to take over the Angels' designated hitter role after missing 11/2 seasons because of a broken left ankle.
Abreu said in February that he preferred to be traded if he wasn't going to be an everyday player. Scioscia told Abreu he would get 400 plate appearances, but with Morales returning and young slugger Trumbo available to play corner outfield and DH, there is little need for Abreu.
There was speculation that the player coming back from the Indians would be 28-year-old outfielder Trevor Crowe, who was pulled from a minor league game on Thursday.
Crowe was a first-round draft pick in 2005 but has played in only 205 major league games, hitting .243 with three home runs and 55 runs batted in.
Jason Isringhausen threw 1-2-3 innings against the Reds on Wednesday and the Royals on Thursday, and now the 39-year-old reliever must wait until 9 a.m. Friday to learn whether he will remain an Angel.
Under baseball's new collective bargaining agreement, teams must pay 10-year big league veterans on minor league contracts an extra $100,000 to keep them on rosters past Thursday. The Angels probably won't make that investment if Isringhausen is not in their plans.
If Isringhausen, who has 300 career saves, makes the team, he'll receive $650,000 in base pay. If he doesn't, "I'll go home and be perfectly fine," he said.
Isringhausen's agent, Dan Horowits, met with Angels General Manager Jerry Dipoto Thursday night, but Scioscia seemed noncommittal Thursday.
"Unfortunately, we don't have as long a look at him as we'd like to have," Scioscia said. "We'll have to make a decision before we get all the information, but there's no doubt he's made progress since the first day he got here."