7/6: Indians at Rangers

Tornado-like conditions blew through Arlington and wiped out BP, but they didn’t wipe out tonight’s game. The huge puddle in right field has already cleared up, and the grounds crew is putting the infield together as I type this.

Tonight’s 8:05 p.m. ET game is on WTAM and STO.

cle3.gifINDIANS (33-49):
CF Brantley, 2B Nix, C Santana, RF Kearns, 3B Peralta, DH Duncan, 1B Marte, LF Crowe, SS Donald. RHP Justin Masterson (1-2, 5.55).




tex2.gifRANGERS (48-34):
CF Borbon, SS Arias, 2B Kinsler, DH Guerrero, LF Hamilton, RF Cruz, 1B Smoak, C Treanor, 3B Blanco. LHP C.J. Wilson (6-4, 3.34).


as far as I can remember, this is only about the 3rd time they sat him against a left handed starter. About 1/3 of his at bats this year have come against lefties. Have you seen his splits though? He’s at .203/.281/.253 against lefties. You’re going to bat him because they’re paying him a lot? That doesn’t exactly make sense. Hafner has shown the last 2 years that he may have some value going forward as a platoon player. He’s put up an .885 OPS against right handers so far this year, and .866 last year. Those vs. right numbers are better than the average guy. The numbers against left handers are worse than the average guy. Which is why it makes sense to sit him … kind of crazy, that lineup, the only left handed bat is Brantley. Didn’t think that was possible with this team

You know, I appreciate that we are, in theory, putting the best team we can find out there each night in an effort to win, but I don’t think we can keep sitting Hafner against lefties. We’re clearly going to be on the hook for his contract, so we should probably try to get him back up to speed (or something resembling it) against all pitchers. It’s insane how much we’re paying him as it is; it’s even more insane that we’re paying him to only bat against righties.
What do we have to lose?

AC, give us the first hand account of the fan falling. Looked horrific. I need to know this dude’s alright before I go to bed.

ST, there was a stretch earlier in the season where Acta sat Hafner against lefties — AC even wrote an article about it.
And if he’s only going to hit against righties, then why bother keeping him? If we’re going to waste all that money on a platoon HITTER, why not let him go and bring someone else in that might be able to, I don’t know, hit both lefties and righties? It’s crazy to have a platoon DH who’s making that much money and taking a roster spot.

would agree, if the Indians had anyone who could replace Hafner. Who do the Indians have in the organization who they could put in that DH spot and would put up an .850 or above OPS against right handers, i.e., the majority of pitchers they’re going to face? I mean, we can complain about Hafner taking a roster spot and not producing much, but do the Indians have anyone who Hafner’s blocking who we’d think could outproduce him? I don’t think so. Any AAA prospect who can hit will likely get a chance later this year when they move Peralta and Kearns (Goedert and Brown) That might change by next year, if Hafner doesn’t pick it up at all in the second half and some prospect emerges, like if Goedert is for real, and they could DH him and have Chisenhall at 3b, but for this year there’s no reason to discuss releasing Hafner, especially when he continues to be an above average hitter against right handed pitching.

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