Jesus Montero’s demotion to Triple-A has come with a position switch — and a muddled future with the Seattle Mariners.

Montero, who as a Yankees prospect was compared to Miguel Cabrera, was sent down this week after hitting just .208 in 29 games this season. Observers noticed Montero playing with very limited confidence as a result of the prolonged offensive malaise. Amid expectations that he would become an elite power hitter, Montero has a substandard .699 OPS in more than 700 major league plate appearances.

Montero, 23, has not played an inning in the majors at a position other than catcher (or designated hitter). But he will play primarily first base at Tacoma, Mariners general manager Jack Zduriencik said.

The move is likely permanent — at least as long as Montero remains with the Mariners — because Tacoma teammate Mike Zunino is viewed as the team’s catcher of the future.

Zduriencik did say Montero is likely to catch “a couple times a week” and serve as the Rainiers’ designated hitter occasionally.

“Our goal was to help to get him back on track offensively and give him some versatility defensively playing multiple positions,” Zduriencik said in an email to when asked about the decision. “He just turned 23 this winter. (The) move is to give him an opportunity to step back and regain his game.