Justin Maxwell did exactly what a four-year veteran is supposed to do a week before the Astros’ first official spring training workout for the 2013 season.

The center fielder casually shagged fly balls, threw light batting practice and offered up simple tips about a complex game — all with his 4-year-old son.

With about 15 Astros participating in informal workouts Saturday at the minor league portion of the team’s Osceola Stadium complex, Maxwell enjoyed the warm, relaxed, sun-filled vibe that is MLB spring training at its best.

“You talk to every player and as soon as the season’s over, it’s maybe a week or a couple days before guys want to start getting out there on the field,” said Maxwell, who hit .229 with 18 home runs and 53 RBIs last season for the Astros. “It’s a long time coming. … You can’t beat this: 75 degrees every day with no clouds in the sky.”

The muscle-armed 29-year-old also has real 2013 goals. The Astros are counting on Maxwell to assert himself as the team’s everyday center fielder, becoming a certainty in an everyday lineup that could feature rotating players at the corners. A healthy Maxwell is ready for a strong season. And he wants to own the land around Tal’s Hill.

“I know I can play all three outfield positions, but I’m definitely more comfortable in center,” said Maxwell, who focused on his right arm strength during the offseason and began hitting earlier than normal.