Friday, April 13, 2012

Classic Ned

For the second time this week Ned Yost is trotting out a lineup that is a real head scratcher. Mistaking speed for on base ability he has inserted Jarrod Dyson into the leadoff spot. Now granted he's not the first manager to do such a thing, and certainly won't be the last, but Kansas City already has a leadoff hitter, and a good one at that. Yost made one of the best decisions of managerial career last year when he moved Alex Gordon to leadoff. This year, A1 was mired in a five game slump but busted out of it Wednesday when he got on base three times and hit his first home run of the young season. Today, though, he will bat fifth, one spot in front of Yuniesky Betancourt. He likely won't see too many hittable pitches.

Here's the full lineup:
CF Jarrod Dyson
RF Jeff Francoeur
1B Eric Hosmer
DH Billy Butler
LF Alex Gordon
2B Yuniesky Betancourt
3B Mike Moustakas
C Humberto Quintero
SS Alcides Escobar


Francoeur is an odd choice to bat second but I really have no problem with it for two reasons. First, and as has been mentioned before, this team doesn't really have a prototypical #2 hitter. Johnny Giavotella was originally tagged for that spot, but remember, he was demoted during spring training when the Royals discovered he was below average defensively, Because apparently they didn't know before. The second reason I don't mind Francoeur hitting second is because of his reputation as Mr. April.

Read more here: http://royalsblog.kansascity.com/?q=node/1013#storylink=cpy
ISplitPABAOBPSLGOPS
April/March643.280.323.481.805
May706.247.286.374.660
June633.255.297.378.675
July643.280.323.470.793
August790.276.323.432.755
Sept/Oct708.286.325.465.790
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table

As you can see he is his most productive the first month of the season and he's off to another good start this year batting .333/.391/.429 in 23 plate appearances. If you're wondering if he's ever hit second before, the answer is yes, twice actually, in a game he didn't start. He had a walk and a sacrifice fly. So there's that.

This lineup could work but it wouldn't make it any less nonsensical. Yost once hit Willie Bloomquist third and Spork responded by hitting a freaking game winning home run. But even though the end result was productive Bloomquist never hit third again, because it was an insane idea. I suspect if Dyson steals just one base today we'll see him at the top of the lineup until Lorenzo Cain comes off the disabled list. 

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hindsight is 20/20, but have to agree that this lineup does not make much sense. For one game it is no big deal, but don't forget that 4 days ago Yost insisted on throwing in all the reserves after a mere 3 games. Ned, you need to run the varsity team out there every day this early in the season.

Jeff Parker said...

Well now it's 2 games. Dyson got on base 1 time in 5 appearances while Gordon got on 3 times in 4. But Dyson is still fast so gets to bat leadoff again today.