A deal is not certain to be completed, with one source describing the possibility as “50-50.” The hangup, the source said, is how much of Abreu’s $9 million salary the Angels would include in the trade.
The Indians, in a development that appeared related to the Abreu talks, removed outfielder Trevor Crowe from a minor-league game on Thursday, sources said. Such a move often indicates that trade talks are at an advanced stage.
Abreu, 38, faces limited playing time with the Angels due to the return of designated hitter Kendrys Morales from leg injuries and the signing of free-agent first baseman Albert Pujols last December.
The Indians’ plans for Abreu, if they acquire him, are not known. Abreu fits best as a designated hitter at this stage of his career, but the Indians already have a left-handed DH, Travis Hafner.
Left field is a greater area of need for the Indians, who moved Michael Brantley to center after Grady Sizemore underwent back surgery. Sizemore is expected to miss several months.