Originally posted on Fox Sports West  |  Last updated 4/18/12
It has become one of the questions surrounding the Angels as they've stumbled to a 4-7 start: Why isn't Mark Trumbo playing more? The young slugger led the team with 29 home runs and 87 RBI last season and finished second in the American League Rookie of the Year voting. However, he was displaced from first base by the signing of Albert Pujols. The plan was to get Trumbo playing time instead at a variety of positions -- as a backup to Pujols at first base, and as an occasional designated hitter, third baseman and corner outfielder. But 11 games into the season, Trumbo has started just five times -- three times at third base, where he made three errors, and twice at DH. He didn't play Tuesday in the Angels' 5-3 loss to the A's. "You might know more than I do on that one," Trumbo said when asked by reporters before Tuesday's game if he had any idea what manager Mike Scioscia had in mind for his playing time. "Going into things, I knew I probably wouldn't be playing every day, and that's exactly what's panned out. I don't have any resentment or anything. It's just the way things are working." Trumbo has certainly made the most of his limited playing time. He is 6-for-16 (.375) with two home runs and has even shown improvement in his plate discipline -- something that was a major knock against him as a rookie, when his on-base percentage was just .291. Thus far in 2012, Trumbo has more walks than strikeouts (3-2) and a .474 OBP. "We want to get Trumbo in there as much as possible. Nothing's changed from spring training," Scioscia said. "Right now, there are some guys that look like they're about to break out that we want to keep playing in the lineup." Alberto Callaspo started at third base Tuesday and went 2-for-4, raising his average to .174 (4-for-23). Trumbo, meanwhile, went through another extensive pregame workout at third base with coach Alfredo Griffin. NOTES, QUOTES Bullpen fails after Haren's solid start --RHP Dan Haren went into Tuesday's start against the A's having given up 20 hits in his first 10 13 innings this season. Opposing hitters batted .447 against Haren in those two starts. He held the A's to just one run on five hits in 6 23 innings Tuesday, but manager Mike Scioscia pulled him from the game despite the fact that he had thrown only 85 pitches. The Angels blew a one-run lead after Haren left the game. --LHP C.J. Wilson and 1B Albert Pujols will cost the Angels over 320 million in salary during their careers with the team, and signing the two as free agents last winter will also cost the Angels in this year's draft. The Angels will give up draft picks as compensation and will not make their first selection in this June's draft until the 114th overall pick. --1B Albert Pujols was 1-for-4 with an infield single Tuesday in the Angels' loss to the A's. Pujols has gone 11 games and 45 at-bats into his Angels career without hitting a home run. He had never gone longer than 28 at-bats into a season before hitting his first home run. Pujols averaged one home run every 14.2 at-bats during his 11 seasons with the Cardinals. --DH Kendrys Morales was 2-for-4 with a run Tuesday, making him 5-for-8 since being benched Sunday in New York. Morales is batting .500 (10-for-20) in the Angels' five home games this season, .056 (1-for-18) in their six games on the road. --RHP Kevin Jepsen struck out the first batter he faced with a one-run lead in the eighth inning Tuesday and was ahead of the next batter 1-and-2. However, he walked that batter and the next one as well, then gave up a game-tying RBI single and an RBI double before being pulled from the game. Jepsen has allowed seven runs on six hits and two walks in 4 13 innings this season. All of the runs and five of the six hits have come in two of his six appearances. BY THE NUMBERS: 5.70 -- ERA of Angels relievers through the first 11 games of the season. QUOTE TO NOTE: "We're going to have to have guys form into roles down there, make pitches and get outs. That's going to be very, very important for us." -- Manager Mike Scioscia, on the team's beleaguered bullpen.
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