When Juan Rivera broke his leg in Winter Ball, the Angels moved quickly and signed 31 year old Shea Hillenbrand to be their DH. Hillenbrand defies logic as he doesn’t strike out much, but he doesn’t walk much either. It’s amazing that he continues to hit for a decent average despite swinging at everything. Over the last three seasons, Hillenbrand has hit for a .293 average and he has averaged 77.3 runs scored, 18 homers and 76.7 RBIs! He has only walked 71 times over the last three seasons but he still continues to hit and he will again this season for the Angels.
28 year old Juan Rivera really came into his own last season. He hit .310 with a .887 OPS, 23 homers and 85 RBIs in only 448 at bats. It’s a shame that Rivera broke his leg in Winter Ball because he could have put up huge numbers as a full-time starter for the first time in his career. When he comes back, he could push Hillenbrand over to first base.