Demonstrating something resembling an actual understanding of certain players’ limitations against left-handed pitching, and Ben Francisco’s redundant-at-fucking-best position on the club’s roster, Blue Jays manager John Farrell has done some tweaking to his lineup heading into tonight’s Home Opener against lefty Felix Doubront of the Red Sox.
Rajai Davis replaces Eric “the Butcher” Thames in left field, while Adam Lind is dropped to fifth in the order, with Edwin Encarnacion hitting cleanup.
This, of course, makes sense because Adam Lind has been, as I noted last month, the worst qualified hitter in MLB over the last two years by thirty-fucking-one points of wOBA, with an astonishingly terrible .219.
Davis sports a career .350 OBP against left-handers, a .336 wOBA, and put up a career-high .362 in 2011, albeit in just 90 PA. While his light-hitting ways drag down his OPS, we know what a weapon he can be once he gets on the basepaths. More importantly, in his 91 plate appearances against lefties last year, Thames posted a meagre wOBA of .273.
Small sample sizes, to be sure, but Davis is a good play, in my view. And if we could just knock Lind down a couple more pegs in the order against lefties, then the club might really be on to something.
In other roster news, as you’ve probably already heard, Joel Carreno was optioned to Las Vegas after his start yesterday, with Aaron Laffey joining the bullpen in his place, because the club wants an extra lefties in the ‘pen, in order to deal with the Red Sox many left-handers. Seems excessive to have eight guys in the bullpen, but I get it, after so many relievers were used in the weekend series. Meh…