There was heavy action Friday in the principal’s office, where struggling outfielders Vernon Wells and Bobby Abreu were summoned for lengthy individual closed-door meetings with Manager Mike Scioscia and hitting coach Mickey Hatcher.
Change was in the air, precipitated by the return of 20-year-old outfielder Mike Trout, who was called up from double-A Arkansas on Friday and will push Wells and Abreu into more part-time roles.
Scioscia said the speedy Trout, who hit .163 but showed much promise during a three-week stint with the Angels in July, will start at least three or four times a week, mostly in the corner outfield spots and occasionally in center.
Abreu, who entered Friday hitting .252 with six homers and 45 runs batted in, will probably sit against left-handers, and Wells, who entered Friday with a .200 average, 17 homers and 46 RBIs, will be on the bench against more right-handers.
Trout started in right field against the Orioles on Friday night, with regular right fielder Torii Hunter moving to designated hitter. Wells, whose neck is stiff from Wednesday night’s collision with the wall, was in left, but Abreu was on the bench.
“There will be times Bobby and Vernon are not in the lineup, but [Trout’s playing time] is not going to be totally at their expense,” Scioscia said. “Peter Bourjos will need a break [in center]. There will be ways to use Mike that won’t just affect Vernon and Bobby.”
The promotion of catcher Hank Conger from triple-A Salt Lake on Thursday night will also cut into Jeff Mathis’ playing time.