In case you haven’t heard, the Detroit Tigers are playing the New York Yankees tonight in Game Five of the ALDS. Most suspect that it’s going to be an uphill battle for the Tigers, whose batting, pitching and fielding is inferior to their opposition, the winners of the most competitive division in baseball.

However, just in case there was any room for optimism, manager Jim Leyland has decided to douse it in gasoline, light it on fire, stomp it out, shoot it, drag the dead optimism through the streets of the city, pour hot tar on it, tie it to two Ford Mustangs heading in opposite directions and then piss on its remains by batting third baseman for the day Don Kelly second in the lineup.

Don Kelly who collected an out in 70.9% of his plate appearances this year, a slight improvement over the 71.5% of at bats he’s gotten out in over the course of his career. Even against right handed pitching, the left handed batter had a sub .300 on base percentage this year to match his .292 career OBP vs. RHP. Making matters even strangers is the fact that of Kelly’s 288 career appearances at the Major League level, he’s only played third base 64 times.

Let’s take a look at the lineup and the rate at which these players avoided getting out this season, without comment:

  1. Austin Jackson, .317
  2. Don Kelly, .291
  3. Delmon Young, .302
  4. Miguel Cabrera, .448
  5. Victor Martinez, .380
  6. Magglio Ordonez, .303
  7. Alex Avila, .389
  8. Jhonny Peralta, .345
  9. Ramon Santiago, .311

Okay, so one comment: Maybe it’s just me, but wouldn’t you want the players who are most likely not to get out to receive more at bats in a game than those who aren’t?

Comments (10)

  1. Yeah, but his OBP while batting 2nd in the order is .313

  2. Well, then . . .

  3. Pretty sure this is an ALDS game…

  4. in your face? 10char

  5. Jim Leyland a better manager than Parkes?

  6. Regardless of what Kelly does tonight (i type after his hr), does it really matter, its one game, its a reverse small sample argument. My guess is it’ll be tightly pitched game, because the managers will go to the pen whenever a pitcher struggles, so you probably looking at 4 PA for the 2 hole, doubt 5. I think it’d be pretty reasonable to bat Peralta 2 instead of Kelly, so theres a difference of .054 between the 2 of them. over 4 ABs is that gonna make a difference? Sure over 100 PAs Peralta would get on 5 more times, reduce that down to 4 PAs its not much. There’s so many differant variables that could come into play (nagging injuries/pitcher/feel) that make up for that difference? I think mocking Leyland’s lineup makes you look foolish. I mean the fact that Kelly hits lefthanded and the game is in Yankee stadium makes him the better play despite the .219 obp

    • This was the point I wanted to make but you certainly put much more effort into and made it sound much better. Nicely done

  7. Doug Fister anyone?

  8. Scott Hall is once again ignorant.

  9. I agree with Canada Goose.

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