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Updated: June 8th, 2013 4:31pm
Free of any 'micromanaging,' Denard Span settling in with his new team

Free of any 'micromanaging,' Denard Span settling in with his new team

by Nate Sandell
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It has been a year of adjustments for former Minnesota Twins center fielder Denard Span.

Span freely admits that adapting to changes in his life has been struggle for him at times. And in November he was forced to make a major alteration when the Twins traded him to the Washington Nationals, ending a 10-year run with the organization with whom he had risen from a 2002 first round draft pick to eventual fan-favorite status.

But after overcoming the initial difficulties of leaving behind his original baseball home, the 29-year-old center fielder has settled in nicely with the Nationals.

"I'm a loyal person. I get used to being around the same people," Span said Friday in a return appearance on 1500 ESPN's Reusse and Mackey Show. "Whenever change comes it's always awkward and weird. Being traded definitely made all those feelings come up, but I've made the most of it and I couldn't have asked for a better organization ... I'm happy."

Span was reunited with his former team this weekend as the Twins made their first trip to Washington D.C. since 1971.

In the months since moving to D.C., Span has taken over the Nationals' leadoff spot and found comfort in his new home in center field at Nationals Park. Span has avoided the rash of injuries that has hampered his new team this season, posting a .270 batting average and .321 on-base percentage in 57 games.

Playing for veteran manager Davey Johnson has also been a welcomed perk for Span, who had spent the entirety of his major league career under the guidance of Ron Gardenhire.

"He's definitely laid back," Span said. "He lets us just play the game, I'll be honest. It's definitely different than what I'm used to, not micromanaging, just lets you do whatever. As long as you're ready to play at seven o'clock, that's all he cares about."

Nate Sandell is a contributor to
Email Nate | @nsandell
In this story: Ron Gardenhire, Denard Span