Maybe not the absolute first.

But one of the first things the Tigers designated hitter Victor Martinez did after arriving at Joker Marchant Stadium was to put on his catching gear.

With good reason.

At some point, probably early in the season — and probably more than last year — Martinez is going to catch.

"I called Victor in early January and asked him about catching," manager Brad Ausmus said Friday before the first official workout for pitchers and catchers. "He was thrilled about it.

"But there is a reason why I asked him to come down early. We play 10 games in National League parks this year.