FORT MYERS, Fla. -- The Orioles have kept their past two Rule 5 Draft picks, but it's going to be tough to make it a third consecutive time with infielder Michael Almanzar.
Baltimore, which selected Almanzar this winter from the Red Sox, has made a host of moves this spring and the 23-year-old has to be on the Opening Day roster -- and stay there -- or else the O's must offer him back.
Given the uncertainty around Manny Machado for Opening Day, Almanzar will get most of his reps this spring at third base. It's the position at which he feels most comfortable, though the Orioles told him he also will be used at first base and designated hitter.
"Right now, third," manager Buck Showalter said of where he looks to slot Almanzar. "You're thinking about how you are going to keep him. We will run him over there some later on. I want to get a good feel for him at third base.
"Manny is going to get back at some point. So you got to think not only that but beyond. ... So far, I've seen there's a possibility [of keeping Almanzar], but we will see. I'm reminded a little more every day, you can see why we thought so highly of him. He's a very talented kid."
Showalter also managed Almanzar's father, Carlos, in Texas, and Almanzar said his dad had just one piece of advice regarding his new manager.
"He said just to do the right things the right way," Almanzar said. "I feel very good here. He's a very good manager, my dad said."