Angels reliever Scot Shields remains undecided about his future

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Several teams have expressed some interest in former Angels reliever Scot Shields, but the 35-year-old right-hander, who was leaning toward retirement at the end of the 2010 season, still hasn’t decided if he will try to pitch again in 2011.

‘I’m not leaning any way,’ Shields said by phone from his Michigan home on Wednesday. ‘If something comes along that seems like it’s a good deal in a good place, I will play. If not, I’ll be happy to stay home and spend time with my family.’

Shields was one of baseball’s most dependable and durable relievers from 2004-2008, but he missed most of 2009 after undergoing season-ending knee surgery in June, and he struggled in his 2010 return, going 0-3 with a 5.28 earned-run average in 43 games before being shut down in early September because of an elbow injury.

Because of his injuries and struggles over the last two years, Shields, who became a free agent when his four-year, $18-million contract expired at the end of 2010, will probably have to accept a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training if he hopes to pitch again. He hasn’t attempted to throw since the end of the season but has been working out.


‘I feel really good,’ Shields said. ‘It doesn’t take me long to get ready for the season. If I do play, I’ll have a lot of desire to prove I can still pitch.’

--Mike DiGiovanna