Giambi expects to get more at-bats off bench

Giambi expects to get more at-bats off bench

HOUSTON -- Rockies veteran Jason Giambi hit a home run once every 29.3 at-bats in 2010, and once every 10.1 at-bats last year. That's a game-winning weapon on the bench.

With an improved overall bench this year, Giambi believes manager Jim Tracy will give him more chances to turn contests in the Rockies' favor.

"There are a lot more options this year, and Jim will be trying to get me an opportunity earlier in the game sometimes," Giambi said. "It'll give me a chance to have a few more at-bats to stay strong. Sometimes the hardest thing is [Tracy] would save me until the end of the game, and a lot of times that time never came."

Giambi will be joined on the bench by left-handed-hitting Tyler Colvin, and one of two right-handed-hitting infielders, Jordan Pacheco or Chris Nelson, depending usually on who starts at third base. Also, with Pacheco able to catch, either he or right-handed-hitting rookie catcher Wilin Rosario also will be available.

Speedy Eric Young Jr. also can win games with his speed. He is 48-for-62 in stolen-base attempts over parts of three Major League seasons, and has the ability to take the extra base with the ball in play.

"We feel as though we have answers for a lot of different situations," Tracy said.