Angels add lefty Romero to pen

MINNEAPOLIS -- J.C. Romero got what he asked for.

Saying he felt "disrespected" in his last few seasons with the
Minnesota Twins, Romero says he asked for a trade and was
accommodated on Friday.

The Twins shipped the left-handed reliever to the
Los Angeles Angels for minor-league infielder Alexi Casilla.

"When you feel disrespected, and feel you can't do anything
about it, that's when you get frustrated," Romero said in a
teleconference. "You have to move on. If you don't move on, you're
going to be a mediocre pitcher and a mediocre person."

The 29-year-old Romero was 4-3 with a 3.47 ERA and had 48
strikeouts in 57 innings last season, but clashed with manager Ron
Gardenhire and struggled to keep inherited runners from scoring.

Dominant at times earlier in his career but inconsistent since
then, Romero has been the subject of trade rumors for the much of
two seasons. He was drafted in 1997 and had his best season in
2002, when he went 9-2 with a 1.89 ERA in 81 appearances to help
the Twins reach the ALCS, where they were eliminated by the Angels.

Control problems kept him from building on that success, which
combined with his $2.2 million salary next season made him a trade

"It's something I really wanted," Romero said. "I actually
requested a trade a couple of months ago and [Los Angeles] was one
of the organizations I wanted to go to."

Things really started to sour last season when Romero got into a
spat with Gardenhire during a game against Kansas City on Sept. 28.
After hitting two batters in the seventh inning, Romero stormed off
the mound just as Gardenhire had emerged from the dugout to make a
change. Gardenhire met with the pitcher the following day, but it
appears the meeting didn't go as well as was initially believed.

"The meeting didn't change the idea of management wanting to
trade me," Romero said, before saying that he enjoyed his
five-plus years with the Twins. "I really from the bottom of my
heart thank them. I hold no grudges. This is a business decision.
I'm a man. Gardy's a man. He's probably happy this happened, too.
It's time to move on."

A phone message was left with Twins general manager Terry Ryan
was not immediately returned.

Romero said he looks forward to joining an already formidable
Angels bullpen that includes closer Francisco Rodriguez and setup
man Scot Shields. He said he wants to develop a niche that he feels
never happened with the Twins, where he was used as a left-handed
specialist, a setup man and sometimes as a long reliever.

"I totally believe that in a team, you have to have
communication," Romero said. "Sometimes communication wasn't
there the way I wanted it. I expect a little more."

The 21-year-old Casilla spent most of last season at Class-A
Cedar Rapids, where he hit .325 with 62 runs scored, three homers,
17 RBI and 47 steals, the fourth-highest total in the Midwest
League. He had a .392 on-base percentage.

To make room for Romero on their 40-man roster, the Angels
designated catcher Josh Paul for assignment.