Miggi: Bring on the games
Manager Dave Trembley said today that he wants to keep the soon-to-be regular fixture of Miguel Tejada and Cesar Izturis together as often as possible this spring.
“The more times I can play them together in the spring, I think the better,” Trembley said.
Tejada, who has been taking extra early work with infield coach Juan Samuel told me earlier this week that he is progressively feeling more comfortable at third base, and is eager to try things at game speed.
“I’m comfortable, now I can’t wait for the games to start,” Tejada said. “In practice now I’m fine, I don’t have a problem, I feel comfortable and I’m excited to be there. I’m waiting for the games to get started because it’s different.”
Tejada acknowledged that fielding the bunt will still be hard for him in the beginning, but there are other areas of the hot corner he feels he has pretty under control.
“It’s not difficult to see the ball coming, no matter how hard it’s coming, [and] going to the side is the same as shortstop,” Tejada said. “I think going forward for the bunt is the big [one], [and] something I’m going to start working on.”
Trembley said his plan for Tejada this spring is similar to that of the rest of the regular position players: balancing playing time with rest.
“[I]try to stay away as best I can from playing guys in back-to-back
games early,” Trembley said. “After that, start playing guys more innings and
working into playing back-to-back games. So, at the end of camp, guys
have played three in a row and are up to nine innings.”
Trembley said he wants to start Izturis and Tejada in the same Spring Training games so the pair can get familiar with each other. He also plans on keeping them back at the Orioles training complex together during certain road trips, so the pair can continue to work alongside each other.
On Sunday, Trembley said he wasn’t sure exactly how many starts he would give Tejada at third base this spring.
“I know he’s going to have to get game time at third, but I think you’re
going to have to balance it with being practical and realize that he’s a
veteran player and an older guy,” Trembley said. “These games don’t count. You want him
ready for the season.”