Maybin Not Giving Any Ground

jay-paris

There’s no maybe with Maybin.

“When I’m in centerfield I give us the best chance out there,” the Padres’ Cameron Maybin said.

Maybin arrived at spring training on Monday, eager to display his will.

But the Padres also have one: Wil Myers.

The plan is for Myers to roam the territory Maybin once called his. Flanked by other newcomers, Justin Upton and Matt Kemp, Myers is projected to be in the middle of the outfield and lineup.

Bring it on, says Maybin, and won’t this be fun.

“My approach is it is open competition,” Maybin said. “All I can do is come into spring, work hard and prove it.”

Manager Bud Black hears that chatter and lets loose a grin.

“That is great,” Black said. “I think in talking with Cam he’s doing fine and he is in a great frame of mind.”

Maybin’s bent on showing his potential didn’t morph into someone being expendable. Injuries derailed his last two years, and in many eyes, his time as being a Padres regular passed.

Maybin disagrees.

“I think everybody better be ready because it’s time to go and I feel like I’m the guy,” Maybin said. “I don’t like the bench, don’t like sitting on the bench. If I’m healthy, I’ll do everything in my power to show that I can play every day. I can’t wait to get out there. I’m ready.”

Ready and willing is start.

Fit and available is another thing.

Maybin hit .235 last year, playing in 95 games.

He hit .157 in 2013, playing in 14 games.

Add them up, and ladies and gentleman, may we introduce Wil Myers.

“My motto is to put up or shut up this year,’’ said Maybin, who got married this offseason. “I need to stay healthy, stay on the field and let the play speak for itself.’’

And if Maybin, as expected, finds himself being a late-inning defensive replacement with an occasional start? Would he request a ticket out of San Diego?

“I’m not worried about that right now,’’ Maybin said. “What we have here is great so I want to be part of that. And at the end of the day, whether I’m starting or not that is just the competitor in me: I feel I should play every day.

“Don’t get it twisted. I will be a great teammate like always. I want to play first and win second and whatever the role is then I’ll embrace it and run with it.’’

It’s a marathon not a sprint, so we’ve heard from baseball folks. But it’ll be a mad dash for Maybin when games start on March 4 to prove he’s still in the mix.

“We’re looking forward to getting our position players on the field and watching out guys play,’’ Black said. “The more better players that you have the better off you are going to be.

Maybin stressed not to write him off yet.

“I’m our best option,’’ he said, “as a centerfielder.’’

+ Contact Jay Paris at jparis@bcaradio.com

 

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