FORT WORTH, TX - Vernon Wells #10 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim prepares to drive a stock car while participating in the Kurt's Busch League All Stars driving event. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images for TMS)
Angels outfielder Vernon Wells also didn't notify Los Angeles he would leave. Wells, who hit .218 with 25 homers and 66 RBIs, is owed $21 million in each of the next three seasons.
Wells had an opt-out in his contract, but instead of chasing the money, he stayed right where he is, showing a loyalty to his team that most players aren’t capable of these days.
Wells' 25 home runs and 66 RBI last year were more than Chase Utley, Ryan Zimmerman, and Rickie Weeks. If any of those players opted out, there would be a stampede of teams lining up to throw hundreds of millions of dollars at them. But Wells, who had more homers and RBIs, decided to stay right where he is without even using his leverage to force the Angels into an extension.
Industry insiders say that Wells could have gotten a five- or six-month contract if he had opted out, and he even would have received an invitation to spring training, where people like you and me have to pay our own way. Instead, he’s going to stay with the Angels for the next three years, leaving all sorts of money on the table.