Angels’ Erick Aybar will “probably get the first crack” at batting second, Mike Scioscia says.

Erick Aybar

Manager Mike Scioscia said Friday that Erick Aybar will “probably get the first crack” at occupying the number two spot in the lineup when the Angels open the season April 1 in Cincinnati.

“I think that’s what our template is and hopefully we’ll get a little chemistry in the last week” of spring training, Scioscia said.

Torii Hunter was the team’s primary number-two hitter last year, but he signed with the Detroit Tigers as a free agent. Aybar has batted second periodically, but typically has hit first or last, in his time with the Angels going back to his debut in 2006.

Next to Bobby Wilson, who’s now a New York Yankee, Aybar had more sacrifice hits last season than any Angel, with seven. Howie Kendrick and Peter Bourjos (in limited time) were right behind with six apiece. That’s probably what Scioscia was talking about when he said Aybar “brings a situational component to that spot.”

He’ll bat second today in the Angels’ exhibition game against the Kansas City Royals.

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About J.P. Hoornstra

J.P. Hoornstra covers the Dodgers, Angels and Major League Baseball for the Los Angeles Daily News, Long Beach Press-Telegram, Torrance Daily Breeze, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Pasadena Star-News, San Bernardino Sun, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, Whittier Daily News and Redlands Daily Facts. Before taking the beat in 2012, J.P. covered the NHL for four years. UCLA gave him a degree once upon a time; when he graduated on schedule, he missed getting Arnold Schwarzenegger's autograph on his diploma by five months.