Vernon Wells said he’s joining the New York Yankees in a trade with the Los Angeles Angels, the Los Angeles Times reported.
Wells, 34, agreed to waive the no-trade clause in his contract, which has two years and $42 million remaining, and accept the move, the newspaper said. The trade may be officially completed today, the L.A. Times added.
“We’ve had some talks, and some were very difficult,” the newspaper cited three-time All-Star Wells as saying. “I have some good friends on this team, some great teammates. Goodbyes are never easy.”
Wells lost his job as a starter last year and would join a Yankees team that will begin the Major League Baseball regular season with outfielder Curtis Granderson on the disabled list along with Mark Teixeira, Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter.
Wells has a career .273 batting average with 259 home runs and 908 runs batted in. He struggled with the Angels after being acquired from the Toronto Blue Jays before the 2011 season, batting .222 with 36 home runs and 95 RBI.
Wells lost his starting job last season with the emergence of rookie Mike Trout, who finished second in the American League Most Valuable Player voting, and was set to be a reserve outfielder again this season.
“Thanks for everything @VernonWells10,” Trout wrote on his Twitter page. “I learned a lot and had a blast playing with ya!!! What a great teammate! Stay with it!”
It’s unclear what Wells’s role will be in New York, though the team is in need of a power hitter. With Granderson, Teixeira, Jeter and Rodriguez all injured, and Russell Martin, Raul Ibanez, Nick Swisher, Eric Chavez and Andruw Jones departing in the offseason, the Yankees will enter this season without players who combined for 206 homers last year.