Trayvon Robinson hasn’t spent much time in Baltimore. He does like the idea of playing in the American League East.
Robinson, who was obtained by the Orioles last week from the Seattle Mariners in return for Robert Andino, enjoyed playing at Oriole Park and Yankee Stadium last season. He hasn’t played at Fenway Park, though.
“I’m really, really excited,” he said on Monday. “I guess I’m going to have to turn it up a notch,” he laughed.
“I think it’s a good opportunity,” Robinson said. “I wasn’t playinng over there. I’d play for one day and then sitting down for two. Sometimes, I’d only play against lefties. It’s tough when you played every day in the minors, especially as a switch-hitter. I feel like I’ve got to play.”
In parts of two seasons with the Mariners, Robinson batted just .215 in 90 games. He struck out 104 times and walked just 22. He’s already talked with Dan Duquette, Buck Showalter and hitting coach Jim Presley.
The Orioles have an opening in left field. Nolan Reimold will be given every opportunity to grab the job, and the team hasn’t ruled out re-signing Nate McLouth. Robinson, who is out of minor league options, will compete with Lew Ford, Jason Pridie, Xavier Avery, L.J. Hoes and perhaps Steve Pearce, for a spot in the outfield. All five have major league experience, but Ford and Pridie have minor league contracts.
In Seattle, Robinson’s progress was hindered by having six or seven outfielders in his way. He wasn’t surprised to hear he was on the move.
“I knew something was up,” he said.
The Orioles were last in the majors with 58 steals and perhaps Robinson can help. He stole six bases last season. Only Adam Jones and McLouth stole more.
“All speed guys are irritating,” Robinson points out. He said he’ll try and be aggressive, go from first to third on a single, move up a base when the ball is in the dirt.
“I try to score runs, to make it easier for the guy behind me.”
Robinson’s arrival in Baltimore will be made easier by having Steve Johnson around. The 25-year-old Robinson, who is a day younger than Johnson, was selected in the 10th round of the 2005 draft by his hometown Dodgers. Johnson was picked three rounds later.
They roomed together their first year and Robinson is looking forward to a reunion.
“He’s an awesome dude,” Robinson said. “That will make it much easier. I’m ready to get started.”