SARASOTA -- So, what position is Scott Hatteberg going to play with his new team?
"I know thereís a pretty good player at first base," he said.
No, he won't be unseating Adam Dunn anytime soon, but the 36-year-old didn't seem to mind all that much. Hatteberg said he was "thrilled" that the Reds reeled him in so he wouldn't have to accept what he deemed "lesser jobs" he also was considering with a week to go before the start of spring training.
Now that he's in place, Hatteberg said he'll do whatever is asked of him.
"Iíll try to mix in wherever I can," he said. "Thatís going to be up to Jerry and the guys. Iíll be ready, however they want me."
Narron said he sees Hatteberg as the backup first baseman for the time being, fitting in behind Dunn and serving as a bat off the bench.
"He gives us tremendous insurance at first if Dunner canít play or there is a trade made
or somebody gets injured," said Narron. "Heís a professional hitter, heís a guy thatís going to put the ball in play. Heís a tough out when he comes up to bat; heís not going to give away at-bats. The thing that weíve got right now, weíve got quite a few veteran guys for our bench, which has a lot of pluses."
In theory, Hatteberg also could serve as an emergency catcher -- but it probably would take an emergency to get him behind the plate again. He gave up catching after the 2001 season (when he threw out an MLB-worst 10 of 125 baserunners trying to steal for Boston) and hasn't appeared in a game there since.
"Itís been four years," he said. "But Iíll do whatever, knock the cobwebs off."