Victor Martinez missed the entire 2012 season with a knee injury and caught only three times all of last season, but two years after his last regular game action behind the plate he’s putting on the gear again this spring.
Tom Gage of the Detroit News writes that new Tigers manager Brad Ausmus called Martinez during the offseason to tell him to be ready for some catching duties and according to Ausmus “he was thrilled with it.”
Alex Avila remains the Tigers’ starting catcher and the vast majority of Martinez’s action will no doubt still come as a designated hitter, but Ausmus specifically cited interleague games in NL parks as a reason for Martinez to get back behind the plate at age 35.
Ken Rosenthal reports that the Angels have signed infielder Zack Cozart to a three-year, $38 million deal.
That seems like a bargain deal for Cozart, who hit .297/.385/.548 with 24 homers and 63 RBI as the Cincinnati Reds shortstop in 2017. In Anaheim, however, he will not be playing short — not with Andrelton Simmons around — so he’ll slide over to third base. He’s never played there, but you figure he can handle it.
This is a pretty nifty move for the Angels, as the other top third base options — specifically, Mike Moustakas — are likely going to cost a lot more than what they’ll be paying Cozart.
Between this, the Ian Kinsler trade and the Shohei Ohtani acquisition, the Angels are going to be sporting a very different look in 2018.