Angels Sign Zack Cozart to Three-Year, $38 Million Deal

Angels Sign Zack Cozart to Three-Year, $38 Million Deal

The Angels went into the offseason having starters Yunel Escobar and Danny Espinosa leaving the team for free agency.

Zack Cozart is the latest to sign with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

According to multiple reports Cozart will play third base for the Angels. The two sides agreed on a $38 dollar deal that lasts three years.

Eppler said Cozart's willingness to change positions assured him "we got the right player from an ability standpoint and a character standpoint". Throw the recently acquired Ian Kinsler into the mix, and the Angels in 2018 will have a significantly improved infield defense. Cozart had a.385 OBP past year (compared to Moustakas'.314).

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Cozart, 32, played seven major league seasons with the Cincinnati Reds.

Cozart's offensive numbers shot up markedly last season, but he and the Angels don't see it as a blip.

Cozart hit.297/.385/.548 with 24 doubles, 7 triples, and 24 home runs in 507 plate appearances with a 67/78 BB/K ratio, a definite career high in walk rate as well without adding strikeouts. Cozart enjoyed a career season in 2017, when he became an All Star for the first time in his career. That makes sense considering incumbent shortstop Andrelton Simmons is one of the most valuable defenders in the game today. Ohtani is expected to join the Angels' rotation and to serve as a designated hitter between starts. Valbuena had a.947 fielding percentage at third base (but a 1.000 fielding percentage during his 48 games at first) while Cozart was in line with league average at.975 while at short. That means one less roster spot is likely to be available for a position player, and Cozart could be a backup at both middle infield positions.