Roger Mooney covers the Tampa Bay Rays for The Tampa Tribune, TBO.com and News Channel 8. He has covered the Rays since their first season in 1998, including 11 years for the Bradenton Herald. Roger has also covered Florida, South Florida and Florida State football, the Bucs and the Lightning.
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Rodriguez on playing center field
Posted Mar 2, 2013 by Roger Mooney
Updated Mar 2, 2013 at 10:22 AM
PORT CHARLOTTE Sean Rodriguez was told before camp began to pack his outfielder’s glove, because he’s going to need it.
Today he needs it.
Rodriguez is starting this afternoon at center field against the visiting Orioles at Charlotte Sports Park. It is a position he last played in 2010, when he appeared there in nine games and made four starts.
“Playing the outfield is playing the outfield,” Rodriguez said. “Whatever gets you in the lineup, right?”
An infielder by trade, Rodriguez knows the key to being a Ray is versatility. He can play all four infield positions and will see time this year at first base as the right-handed bat in some form of a platoon with James Loney.
Rays manager Joe Maddon has talked about Rodriguez also being among the players who will play left field.
“It’s definitely a possibility,” Rodriguez said of his expanded role. “Obviously they’re just trying to see where all the chess pieces are going to fit during games and get a feel for what guys can do and can’t do and where they feel more comfortable. I don’t have a problem with that.”