Lighter Moreland has heavier role with Rangers

Mitch Moreland has a definitive role on the Texas Rangers this season.

With Michael Young and Mike Napoli no longer on the team, Rangers manager Ron Washington says Moreland is his first baseman. The manager wants Moreland to relax and have some fun.

As a rookie in 2010, Moreland was the Rangers' best hitter in their first World Series.

Since then, Moreland has started more than half of the Rangers' games at first base. But he was hampered by a wrist injury the second half of 2011 and missed a month last year with a strained left calf.

Moreland arrived at camp this year more than 15 pounds lighter, in the low 230s. The left-hander's offseason workouts included batting practice against a lefty pitcher three times a week.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)