For an imposing slugger with 61 homers in his first two major league seasons and fairly limitless potential, Mark Trumbo sure gets moved around a lot.
After stints as a solid first baseman, a less-than-solid third baseman and a thoroughly competent outfielder, Trumbo is heading into his third full season with the Los Angeles Angels primarily as a designated hitter.
The Angels’ free-agent spending sprees on Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton are to blame for Trumbo’s transience, yet the power hitter and former Salt Lake Bees star who plays for his hometown team doesn’t seem terribly irritated by his now-annual moves around the diamond.
"It’s kind of the way it’s always been," Trumbo said Thursday at the Angels’ spring training complex in Tempe, Ariz. "I think everyone would like to have a set position, but as the numbers shake out and the quality of the team we have, sometimes certain guys are better fits at certain spots. I just keep going and keep working."
The Angels are grateful Trumbo is amenable to the positions switches they’ve forced on him. He became an All-Star last season, yet he also carries the humility of a player who had turned 25 before he became a major league regular.
"His versatility is important because he [allows] us to keep a big bat in the lineup that we want to," manager Mike Scioscia said.
Around the majors
Reds • Cincinnati blocked ace Johnny Cueto from pitching for the Dominican Republic in next month’s World Baseball Classic. Cueto strained his right oblique eight pitches into last October’s division series against San Francisco.
Because he finished the year with an injury, the Reds had the right to block him from playing in the WBC.
Cueto was 19-9 with a 2.78 ERA in 33 starts during the regular season.
Yankees • Outfielders Curtis Granderson and Brett Gardner could be switching positions.
Granderson worked out in left field Thursday and the speedy Gardner switched to center.
"I’ve said from the beginning that I’m going to toy with it," manager Joe Girardi said. "I’m not saying today that this is what it’s going to be opening day."
Nationals • Washington agreed to terms with right-handed pitcher Chris Young on a minor-league contract with an invitation to major league spring training. Young is 53-43 with a 3.79 ERA in 159 career starts. The 33-year-old Young was an All-Star with the Padres in 2007. Young went 4-9 with a 4.15 ERA in 20 starts last season with the Mets.
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