Angels third baseman Brandon Wood is Cactus League iron man
If they kept records for Cactus League at-bats, Brandon Wood might be on pace to break it.
While many veterans get several days off a week early in camp, the Angels third baseman has played on all 12 days the Angels have played and leads the team with 30 at-bats.
Not that he’s complaining.
“The more at-bats I get, the more I get to work on my timing,” said Wood, who had two singles and a walk in Tuesday’s exhibition game against the San Diego Padres and is batting .300 this spring. “I’m starting to put the barrel of the bat on the ball and getting some hits. It’s encouraging.”
So were the words of Manager Mike Scioscia, who on Monday said Wood, for years the organization’s top position-playing prospect, would get first crack at the starting third-base job he was competing with Maicer Izturis for.
“It’s definitely meaningful to hear that from your manager,” Wood said. “That’s something I’ve dreamt about for a long time.”
Wood’s big-league playing time has been sporadic — he has hit .195 with 74 strikeouts and seven walks in 224 at-bats since 2007 — but he is confident he will be productive with regular playing time.
"At this point in my career, I’m not a guy who can go 10 days without an at-bat and give you a quality at-bat,” Wood, 25, said. “Some guys develop that as they get older, but getting consistent at-bats will lead to success for me at the big-league level.”
--Mike DiGiovanna in Tempe, Ariz.