Amarista poised for another year in utility role

Amarista poised for another year in utility role

PEORIA, Ariz. -- With a glut of outfielders in camp, and the Padres likely to carry five on the 25-man roster, there will be little need for Alexi Amarista to appear in the outfield as he did in 2013.

But he will most likely be seen just about everywhere else.

San Diego manager Bud Black said recently that the plan was again for the Padres to use Amarista, 24, in a super-utility role, where he will bounce around the diamond.

"Alexi's game, for me, is his versatility," Black said. "You look at all the components of his game, he's capable at second, capable at short, capable at third, capable of all three outfield spots," Black added. "He's a very dependable player on defense. On offense, he's done some things to win some games for us. He can move around the diamond, he doesn't scare off, he plays with energy. He's a good all-around player."

Last season, Amarista appeared in 23 games at second base, nine at third base, 13 at shortstop and 95 in the outfield -- mostly because of injuries to outfielders Cameron Maybin and Carlos Quentin.

Amarista was acquired early in 2012 from the Angels, where manager Mike Scioscia gave his former pitching coach, Black, some high praise for Amarista.

"When I talked to Mike, when we made that trade, he said, 'Pepe, this guy is a great fit for the National League.'"

Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.