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Angels have role for Mark Trumbo, but he'll have to beat out Brandon Wood for roster spot

February 22, 2011 | 10:20 am

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Mark Trumbo's path to the big leagues appears to be blocked by first baseman Kendry Morales, but that doesn't mean the Angels' best power-hitting prospect won't claim a spot on the roster this spring.

Manager Mike Scioscia said Tuesday that he could envision a big-league reserve role for Trumbo, who can also play the outfield, and that the Angels wouldn't necessarily send the 25-year-old back to triple-A Salt Lake so he can play every day and continue to develop.

"He's at a stage in his career where if he's going to help us win games, whether there's a 200-at-bat role or a 400-at-bat-role, we would carry him on the club," Scioscia said. "He's showed he's ready for the challenge. Now, it's a question of where he fits in."

The 6-foot-4, 220-pound Trumbo hit .303 with 36 home runs and 122 runs batted in for Salt Lake last season and would have to beat out Brandon Wood for a utility role. If Morales, who is recovering from a broken leg, spends more time at designated hitter, as Scioscia projects, there would be more playing time at first for Trumbo.

But is Trumbo's long, powerful stroke really conducive to a reserve role?

"In theory, a big swing needs higher maintenance, and the way to maintain it is by playing regularly," Scioscia said. "But it doesn't have to be a 500-at-bat year to remain sharp and contribute. If it looks like a 125-at-bat role, that's different."

--Mike DiGiovanna

 Photo: Mark Trumbo. Credit: Robert Lachman / Los Angeles Times.

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