The Los Angeles Angels have reached one-year contract agreements with four players, including slugger Kendry Morales and shortstop Erick Aybar, but could be headed for arbitration hearings with ace Jered Weaver and catcher Mike Napoli.
Weaver led the major leagues with 233 strikeouts last year and finished in the top 10 in WHIP and innings pitched. He has filed a request for $8.8 million while the Angels have offered $7.37 million. Napoli, who led the team with 26 home runs, filed a $6.1 million figure while the Angels offered $5.3 million. He made $3.6 million last year.
Arbitration hearings begin late next month, so the sides have plenty of time to work out a deal.
Morales agreed to a $2.975 million deal while Aybar will sign for $3 million. Both players had breakout seasons in 2009, with Morales finishing fifth in American League MVP balloting and Aybar batting a team-high .312, but each had setbacks in 2010.
Morales, who made $700,000 in 2010, broke his leg celebrating a game-winning grand slam on May 29. At the time, he was batting .290 with 11 home runs and 39 RBIs.
Aybar, who made $2.05 million last year, struggled with injuries and with the adjustment to the leadoff role. He batted just .253 with five home runs and 29 RBIs.
The Angels also reached one-year agreements with second baseman Howie Kendrick and utility outfielder Reggie Willits. Kendrick will make $3.3 million, a raise of $1.55 million from last year, while Willits will be paid $775,000, up from $625,000 last year.
Mark Saxon covers the Angels for ESPNLosAngeles.com.