Sunday, December 17, 2017
Sports

Young eager to take on lesser role for better team

DENVER — As a kid, Michael Young's favorite player was Don Mattingly.

Certainly flattering to hear, but the Dodgers manager joked it's not going to earn the newly acquired Young any additional playing time.

"We'll see what he says once the season is over," Mattingly said Monday.

Young waived his no-trade clause to join Los Angeles, one of the hottest teams in baseball. He knows his playing time will diminish, but a chance to play for a contender was too alluring to pass up. Young was uniform Monday but not in the starting lineup two days after being acquired from the Phillies for a minor-league pitcher.

"Without being disrespectful to Philly, Philly is a great place to play … but yeah, it was a no-brainer decision for me," Young said. "I couldn't wait to get here and get suited up and be a part of the team."

Mattingly expects Young to start today, probably at third base, a position he mostly played with the Phillies this season.

Young arrived at Coors Field early Monday, shaking hands with his new teammates. He received some good-natured ribbing from Skip Schumaker, who greeted Young by reminding the veteran infielder who won the 2011 World Series. It was Schumaker and the Cardinals who beat Young and the Rangers in seven games.

"He just shoved his ring in my face from 2011," Young said, laughing. "I have a good relationship with a lot of these guys. I don't expect that to change. I expect it to improve as time goes on."

What will take some getting used to may be going from an everyday player to more of a spot starter. He understands that and insists his approach will remain the same.

"My role is winning player for the Dodgers," Young said. "That's my role. … The one thing I will say in playing against the Dodgers a couple of weeks ago in Philly — Cliff Lee and I were on the bench and we noticed that every position player had a start (in the series). It's pretty clear that everyone stays active here.

"I expect to be active. I expect to go out and play."

Also, Dodgers rookie OF Yasiel Puig left Monday's game after straining his right knee on an awkward slide into third base. Puig later scored on a sacrifice fly in the sixth but was replaced in rightfield by Schumaker in the bottom half.

ASTROS: All-Star C Jason Castro left in the second inning with a sprained right knee.

BRAVES: RHP Kameron Loe was recalled from Triple-A Gwinnett and is set to make a fill-in start against the Mets today.

CARDINALS: All-Star C Yadier Molina left in the fifth inning with a sore left wrist. And RF Carlos Beltran sat out a second straight game with a stiff back.

INDIANS: All-Star RHP Justin Masterson was forced out of his start in the second inning with what the team described as soreness in the left side of his ribcage.

PIRATES: LHP Wandy Rodriguez, who has been out since June 5 with a forearm strain, was diagnosed with arthritis in his elbow and is unlikely to return to the rotation this season.

REDS: OF Billy Hamilton, one of professional baseball's fastest players, was called up from Triple-A Louisville. Hamilton, 22, set a pro record with 175 steals last season. He had 75 in 123 games for Louisville this season and batted .256.

WHITE SOX: C Tyler Flowers is scheduled to have exploratory shoulder surgery and will be sidelined for 3-6 months.

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