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Angels call up Mike Trout after releasing Bobby Abreu

The Angels promoted prospect Mike Trout and released Bobby Abreu on Friday in response to the team’s early-season struggles.

The Angels are 6-14, have lost five in a row, and are currently one of the worst teams in the American League. They’re tied for last in the AL with 13 home runs, tied for the third-fewest runs scored, and third-worst in slugging percentage. They’re hoping the 20-year-old Trout can give them an offensive spark.

GM Jerry DiPoto described the move as one designed to “add a little energy, get some spice … shake it up a little bit.”

Trout, who hit .220 with five home runs in 120 at-bats last season, was tearing the cover off the ball in the minors. The former first-round pick of the Angels was batting .402 and OPSing 1.091 through his first 20 games in Salt Lake City. Abreu had a miserable spring and was batting .208 with three extra-base hits in 24 at-bats. The 38-year-old is owed $9 million for the season.

The Angels made a major mistake when they let Abreu’s $9 million option for 2012 vest by giving him over 500 plate appearances last season. Now they’re paying for that management mistake, but at least they’re not waiting long to correct it. The team said they wouldn’t bring up Trout unless they had a spot for him. DiPoto says he’ll play.

Now that they’ve cut Abreu, you have to wonder how long it’s going to be before the Angels get rid of their other big mistake — Vernon Wells.

Mike Trout Dressed up as Lady Gaga During Angels’ Rookie Hazing (Picture)

It’s September, meaning it’s the time of year when MLB teams expand their rosters 40 players. Rookies are called up and subsequently hazed. This is Angels top prospect Mike Trout dressed up as Lady Gaga after Sunday’s loss to the Yankees:

Yup, Trout’s Lady Gaga outfit even came complete with a gratuitous nip slip. Thanks Mike! You sickos may have enjoyed seeing him in a Gaga outfit, but I still say Jered Weaver’s prank of Trout was even better.

Thanks to LA Angels Insider for the picture, and head over to their album to see plenty more pictures of the Angels rookies in funky costumes.

Bryce Harper Pumped to Be on Mike Trout’s Arizona Fall League Team

Before we start making fun of Bryce Harper because he makes it so easy, let us first pay him a compliment.  Good for you, Bryce.  That was very mature of you to reach out to a future teammate and tell him how excited you are to be joining forces.

Harper recently sent a tweet to Angels prospect Mike Trout to convey his excitement about their Arizona Fall League team: “Me and Mike Trout on the same AFL (Arizona Fall league) team!” Harper wrote. “Love how this years working out! We’re stacked with talent. @Trouty20.”

Trout — who belted two home runs on Tuesday — and Harper are indeed two of the best prospects in baseball and should anchor a strong lineup.  Heck, it doesn’t even sound like Bryce will get bored with the team like he has with some others in the past.

While the Tweet is harmless, I just enjoy picking on Harper.  Saying stuff like this and blowing kisses to pitchers really lets his age show through.  Tell me you can’t rememeber playing intramural sports when you were younger and being pumped when your buddies got picked for your team.  Who hasn’t had the “we’re gonna be stacked this year” talk with their friends when they were 14 years old?  As long as Harper’s having fun I guess that’s all that matters.  Oh yeah, and as long as he doesn’t ever wear his hair like this again.

Fist pound to Halos Heaven for pointing out the Harper tweet.

Mike Trout Pranked By Angels With Phone Number Bit

Mike Trout, a highly-touted outfield prospect from the Los Angeles Angels, recently broke an unwritten rule during team exercises. For that, his phone bill will pay accordingly.  According to Off Base Percentage, Trout spoke out of turn during one of Mike Scioscia’s team building exercises.  Pitcher Jered Weaver was reportedly offended and decided to play a prank on Trout to teach him a lesson.

Weaver — or some other teammate if the pitcher is being falsely accused — arranged for Trout’s cell phone number to be plastered on the scoreboard at Temple Diablo Stadium at various points throughout the game. Lucky for the 19-year-old, there were only 2,822 people on hand to watch the spring training game between the Angels and A’s.  Still, teammate Joel Pineiro said his phone was “blowing up” in his locker during the game.

We’ve seen plenty of baseball pranks before, but this one seems like more of a nuisance than a practical joke.  Rather than thinking to himself, “haha you got me,” Trout has to be thinking, “great, now I have to get a new cell phone number and let everyone know about it.” That being said, I doubt he’ll ever speak out of turn again during one of his manager’s team building exercises.