Bay center field dabbling a 'possibility'
May, 14, 2011
By Adam Rubin | ESPNNewYork.com
Terry Collins acknowledged he might station Bay in center field for an occasional game while Angel Pagan remains on the disabled list in order to get Fernando Martinez a start while keeping Bay and Carlos Beltran's bats in the lineup.
"He would do it in a second," Collins said about Bay in center field. "There's a possibility of that happening. I don't know when that's going to be, but I think we certainly need to consider a move like that once in a while just to get [Martinez] into games."
Martinez actually has played the bulk of his minor league career in center field (231 games, versus 78 in right field and 33 in left field). But Collins noted the 22-year-old Martinez has an arthritic right knee, even comparing it to Beltran's degenerative situation, even though Beltran is 11 years older. So Collins does not want to play Martinez in center field.
As for using Beltran for a spot start in center field rather than Bay, Collins seems to be softening on his stance of right field only.
"If it's a one-game thing, he might be open to that," Collins said. "I had not talked to him about it."
When the two had spoken in spring training, Collins resolved not to put Beltran in center field for a two-week stint or more if Pagan landed on the DL.
"Again, I think it's unfair. He's very, very comfortable right now in right field," Collins said. "I think the fact that he's out there [in right field] is what's kept him in the lineup this much. I talk to this guy every day. So if that's what we think is the best move, I know one thing: Carlos Beltran will be open to anything he can to do to help this club. He's done it so far. He won't change now."