The Los Angeles Angels acquired veteran outfielder Shane Victorino and more than $3.8 million from the Boston Red Sox on Monday for infielder Josh Rutledge.
The 34-year-old Victorino is a two-time World Series champion, a two-time All-Star and a four-time Gold Glove winner. He has spent the past three years in Boston, batting .245 in just 33 games this season with two stints on the disabled list.
Overall, Victorino has hit .276 with 108 home runs, 486 RBIs and 229 stolen bases in 12 major league seasons, including stints with San Diego, Philadelphia, Los Angeles Dodgers and the Red Sox.
The AL West-leading Angels coveted Victorino’s postseason experience after he played a key role for the Phillies’ championship team in 2008 and again for the Red Sox’s title-winning team in 2013. Victorino memorably hit a grand slam in Game 6 of the ALCS to send Boston to the World Series, where he added a key three-run double in the Red Sox’s title-clinching victory in Game 6.
”My opinion is that we wouldn’t have won the World Series without him in 2013,” Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington said.
”I think about a guy that is maybe one of more passionate baseball players I’ve ever been around,” Cherington added. ”He played with incredible grit and was a tough, smart player, and we wish him well.”
The trade was announced about one hour before the first pitch in Boston’s game against the Chicago White Sox, forcing the Red Sox to scratch Victorino from the No. 2 spot in their lineup.
Victorino mostly played right field for Boston, but seems likely to play in left field against left-handers for the Angels.
Los Angeles has struggled at the position ever since owner Arte Moreno got rid of $125 million slugger Josh Hamilton in April with no clear replacement. The Angels’ left fielders are collectively batting .212 with five homers.