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Myers aims to increase durability

Padres left fielder will have limited workload
MLB.com @AJCassavell

SAN DIEGO -- A bulkier Wil Myers arrived at Padres camp this spring destined to better endure the grind of a big league season. In his move back to the outfield, Myers was determined to avoid the late-season drop in his playing weight that he had experienced in the two seasons prior.

Three injuries and two stints on the disabled list later, it remains unclear what Myers' ideal playing weight is. It's also unclear whether his added muscle played any role in the back, oblique and arm injuries he sustained.

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SAN DIEGO -- A bulkier Wil Myers arrived at Padres camp this spring destined to better endure the grind of a big league season. In his move back to the outfield, Myers was determined to avoid the late-season drop in his playing weight that he had experienced in the two seasons prior.

Three injuries and two stints on the disabled list later, it remains unclear what Myers' ideal playing weight is. It's also unclear whether his added muscle played any role in the back, oblique and arm injuries he sustained.

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For now, Myers has dropped 8-10 pounds from his preseason weight of 228. That was by default -- a product of staying off his feet and not being able to work out for 3 1/2 weeks while sidelined with a left-oblique strain.

"I will say this: I don't regret getting bigger," Myers said. "I worked very hard this offseason for a good reason. [The injury] is one of those things that just happened. But this offseason, I'll work out hard, but I won't really be concerned about where my weight is, about trying to bulk up."

That "reason," Myers said, stemmed from his weight dropping to near 200 pounds at the end of the 2017 season. He slumped toward the end of the year in both '16 and '17.

"At 6-3, that type of frame can hold more weight," Myers said. "It should hold more weight. But I've never been a big guy in my life before. I've always been a little on the slender side."

Myers returned from the disabled list Thursday night in San Francisco and went 0-for-3 with a walk in San Diego's 3-0 loss. The Padres have mapped out a plan to limit his workload for the foreseeable future. He'll slot into an outfield rotation with Manuel Margot, Travis Jankowski and Hunter Renfroe.

That makes it likely Myers comes off the bench about once per series. It's the prudent play, in the eyes of the Padres.

As for Myers' frame, manager Andy Green seemed to dismiss the notion that the weight gain contributed to his early-season ailments.

"I personally wasn't concerned about his weight," said Green. "He was strong and ready to go. Sometimes injuries occur, regardless of what weight you're at. I'm glad he feels good physically right now. We're just going to continue to monitor him every day."

Margot moving up?
The Padres still envision Margot at the top of their order in the long run. It might not be long before he's back there.

Clearly, the Padres had designs on seeing Margot in the top spot this year. In 14 of his first 20 starts, Margot batted leadoff. His average dipped to .176 in the last of those.

Video: SD@SF: Green on Margot's comfort in the lineup

But after a serious overhaul of his mechanics, Margot has seemingly found the groove that landed him sixth in National League Rookie of the Year voting last season.

Entering play Friday, Margot was batting .351/.385/.486 over the last 14 days -- batting in the bottom third of the order in every one of those games. He sprayed a pair of doubles down both lines against Madison Bumgarner on Thursday.

"Manny's doing some really good things," Green said. "Yesterday when I was putting the lineup together for Bumgarner, my first instinct was to write him at the top. But he's settled in so comfortably in that seven spot that I haven't wanted to make an adjustment for him. It's been such a push for us to get him going, that once he's gotten going, it seemed prudent to leave him alone and let him do what he's doing down there in the seven hole.

"I do think that some time in the near future you're going to see him back at the top, against left-handed pitching in particular."

Fort Wayne affiliation extended
The Padres agreed to a two-year extension of their player development contract with the Class A Fort Wayne TinCaps, an agreement that now runs through 2020. Already, at 20 years, it's the longest-lasting Minor League affiliation in club history.

Nine of the Padres top 30 prospects currently play their home games in Fort Wayne, including left-hander MacKenzie Gore (No. 2) and infielders Gabriel Arias (No. 9) and Esteury Ruiz (No. 10).

AJ Cassavell covers the Padres for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @ajcassavell.

San Diego Padres, Wil Myers