Angels Option Andrew Velazquez, Jo Adell, Mickey Moniak


The Angels announced Friday evening that infielder Andrew Velazquez and outfielders Jo Adell and Mickey Moniak have been optioned to Triple-A Salt Lake. None of that trio will be on the major league team out of camp.

Velazquez was the Halos’ primary shortstop last year, picking up 100 starts at the position after being claimed off waivers from the Yankees over the 2021-22 offseason. A glove-first infielder, he rated highly over his 906 shortstop innings but provided almost nothing at the plate. The switch-hitter posted a .196/.236/.304 line while striking out in 34.1% of his 349 plate appearances. Los Angeles brought in Brandon Drury via free agency and Gio Urshela in a trade with Minnesota to upgrade the infield.

While neither Drury nor Urshela will necessarily see much action at shortstop, they provide general infield depth that could push David Fletcher or Luis Rengifo to shortstop more frequently. That relegated Velazquez back to Triple-A for now.

Adell and Moniak are each one-time top prospects who have struggled in multiple big league looks. The former played in a career-high 88 MLB games last season but only managed a .224/.264/.373 line with a massive 37.5% strikeout rate. He also struck out at a concerning 31.1% clip over 40 Triple-A contests but paired that with a strong 11.1% walk rate and 13 home runs in 180 trips to the plate.

Moniak came over from the Phillies in a deadline trade that sent Noah Syndergaard to Philadelphia. The former first overall pick managed only a .200/.226/.417 line over his first 60 plate appearances with the Halos. He’s a career .157/.218/.268 hitter over parts of three MLB seasons.

Both Adell and Moniak have one minor league option year remaining. If they spend 20+ days in the minors this season, they’ll exhaust that final year and be out of options next spring. That puts pressure on both players to take a significant step forward in 2023 if they’re to carve out long-term roles in Anaheim.

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