Fuld joins Twins in familiar setting

Fuld joins Twins in familiar setting

ST. PETERSBURG -- Outfielder Sam Fuld admitted it was weird walking into the visitors' clubhouse for the first time at Tropicana Field on Tuesday, as he officially joined the Twins in time for their series against his former club.

Fuld, who played with the Rays from 2011-13, was claimed on waivers by the Twins from the A's on Sunday. Fuld, 32, was hitting .200/.273/.433 with a homer, two triples and a stolen base in seven games with Oakland before being designated for assignment on April 12.

"It feels strange and great," Fuld said. "It's kind of a crazy day, because it's my first day with the Twins, so I'm meeting lots of new teammates, but also seeing a lot of familiar faces, too. It's my first time I've played here as an opposing player. So it's strange but I'm enjoying it."

Fuld hasn't played since April 11, and wasn't in the starting lineup on Tuesday. He's expected to see time at all three outfield positions and could push Aaron Hicks for playing time in center field if Hicks continues to struggle.

"I don't know how it'll play out, but they're aware I can play all three outfield positions and I'm comfortable playing all three," Fuld said. "I'm comfortable coming off the bench, pinch-hitting, pinch-running, that kind of stuff. I've performed in various roles. I'm comfortable being a bench player and playing sporadically but also definitely comfortable playing on a more regular basis."

Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said he likes what Fuld can bring to the team with his speed and defense.

"He can play all three outfield positions and play them well," Gardenhire said. "He slaps the ball around. He can steal bases. He can come off the bench or lead off a game. He's a contact guy. But I like the fact he's played with winning teams so he knows how to help you win baseball games. So we hope he'll bring some of that to us as we try to get better ourselves."

Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.