The Angels placed Simmons on the restricted list Tuesday, after he informed the team that he was opting out of the remainder of the 2020 season. The transaction opened up a spot on the 40-man roster and 28-man active roster for Elliot Soto, who will help fill the void in the middle infield while Simmons misses the Angels' final five games of the season. With that, Simmons' time with the Angels could be over, as he's set to become an unrestricted free agent this offseason. He appeared in 30 games in 2020, slashing .297/.346/.356 with no home runs, two steals, 19 runs and 10 RBI.
Simmons informed the Angels on Tuesday that he will opt out of the rest of the season. With the Angels out of the playoff race, Simmons has decided to end his season a little early. He ends the year with a .295/.348/.352 slash line, zero home runs and two stolen bases in 122 at-bats and was officially placed on the restricted list before Tuesday's game in San Diego. David Fletcher and Luis Rengifo should handle the work at shortstop over the rest of the week. Simmons will be a free agent this offseason.
Simmons will start at shortstop and will bat ninth Sunday against the Rockies, Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times reports. Simmons had led off in five straight games for the Angels before he was moved down to the No. 9 spot in Saturday's 5-2 win. His drop in the lineup corresponds with the return of David Fletcher (ankle), who settled in atop the order in his first game in two weeks. Expect Fletcher to serve as the Angels' full-time leadoff man versus both left- and right-handed pitching moving forward, an arrangement that will likely put a damper on Simmons' run-scoring opportunities.
Simmons will start at shortstop and will bat leadoff Thursday against the Rangers, Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times reports. Simmons has now slotted in atop the lineup eight times in 10 games, taking over the table-setting role while David Fletcher (ankle) is on the mend. Though he's rewarded the Angels with a .343/.361/.429 slash line over that stretch, Simmons could move back down the lineup at some point during the Angels' weekend series in Colorado. Fletcher is eligible to return from the IL and is said to be progressing, so he could be activated at some point within the next three days.
Simmons went 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles, an RBI and a run in the first game of a doubleheader sweep over the Astros on Saturday. Simmons didn't play in Game 2, but the night off had nothing to do with his recent performance. In fact, the shortstop has been red-hot at the plate of late, collecting two hits in each of his last five games and driving in a run in each of his last four contests. Over the course of his current nine-game hitting streak, Simmons is hitting .429 with five RBI and six runs scored. Prior to Saturday, every hit during the streak had been a single, but Simmons stepped up with a two doubles, including a two-bagger that scored a key run to break a tie in the seventh inning. The veteran's hot streak has pushed his season average to a robust .349 through 63 at-bats.