Angels have role for Mark Trumbo, but he'll have to beat out Brandon Wood for roster spot
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."
Photo: Mark Trumbo. Credit: Robert Lachman / Los Angeles Times.