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Angels: Mike Scioscia says Mike Trout's future is not at leadoff

February 27, 2013|By Bill Shaikin
  • Mike Trout will lead off for the Angels this season.
Mike Trout will lead off for the Angels this season. (Jamie Squire / Getty Images )

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Mike Trout will lead off for the Angels this season, but not for his entire career.

That was the word Wednesday from Angels Manager Mike Scioscia, whose lineup this year will feature Albert Pujols hitting third and Josh Hamilton hitting fourth. Trout, as he did when he won the American League rookie of the year award last season, will lead off.

"Long range, he's probably better suited to hit second, third or fourth," Scioscia said. "Right now, there's no doubt he's part of an elite group of leadoff men."

Trout hit 30 home runs and stole 49 bases last season, numbers that reflect a rare high-caliber blend of power and speed. However, given the hypothetical situation of a lineup without Pujols or Hamilton, Scioscia said the Angels still could use Trout atop the lineup or in the middle.

"Mike could hit anywhere from 1 through 4 in any lineup in baseball," Scioscia said.

Erick Aybar, Alberto Callaspo and Howie Kendrick will rotate in the second spot in the lineup, Scioscia said.

Jered Weaver starts against the Dodgers on Friday, with Kevin Jepsen among the relievers scheduled to appear. Friday's game will mark the first time anyone in the starting rotation or any of the top relievers will appear this spring.

With Ryan Madson expected to open the season on the disabled list, the Angels will look at Ernesto Frieri, Scott Downs, Jepsen and Sean Burnett as they figure out who will start the season as closer and how they will handle the seventh and eighth innings.

The Angels promoted Chad Cordero to major league camp. Cordero, trying to return to the major leagues for the first time in 2010, is unlikely to break camp with the Angels, but the coaching staff wanted a better look at him.

Wednesday's lineup vs. the San Francisco Giants: Trout, cf; Luis Rodriguez, 2b; Kole Calhoun, rf; Bill Hall, 3b; Hank Conger, c; Andrew Romine, ss; Luis Jimenez, dh; Efren Navarro, 1b; Trent Oeltjen, lf; Nick Maronde, p. The game starts at noon PST on Fox Sports West and AM 830.

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