Abreu rejects Angels’ offer for $16 million

Bobby Abreu has rejected a two-year contract offer worth $16 million from the Angels, SI.com’s Jon Heyman reports.

Abreu, called the Angels MVP by manager Mike Scioscia, was frustrated by a tight market last winter and wound up signing a one-year deal with the Angels for $5 million after making $16 million the year before. Scioscia and other Angels officials credit Abreu for helping to improve the hitting approach of several of their young players, most notably leadoff man Chone Figgins.

Abreu hit .293 with 15 home runs and 103 RBIs. He, Alex Rodriguez and Albert Pujols are the only players to have driven in at least 100 runs in each of the last seven years.

Interestingly, Abreu was offered that same $16-million, two-year contract by the Rays early last winter but turned it down. When the market dried up, he took the Angels’ offer over some others because he liked the idea of going there. Abreu has enjoyed his year in Southern California, but he isn’t immediately rushing to take the first offer.

I don’t think it’s the money that Abreu is after as much as the length of the contract. I don’t blame him for not wanting to go one or two years at a time, but he also has to be realistic. He’s 35 years old and while he’s coming off a productive season, clubs aren’t willing to hand players multi-year contracts when they’re 35 or older.

It is interesting that he runs the risk of making less money again next year after rejecting yet another $16 million deal. If he winds up signing a one-year deal again, then Abreu’s strategy will have once again backfired. Of course, if he winds up being a ALCS or World Series hero, then the move could pay off in the winter.

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