It’s been an eventful week for our lovable little scrubbies. The Dodgers have come home to Southern California, and the Scrubbies are preparing for more playing time. Now that Spring training is coming to a close and the regular season is beginning, it’s time to take a closer look at the Scrubbies who will be rotating at third base for the next two months until Hanley Ramirez returns from his thumb injury. Tonight I’ll be talking about how manager Don Mattingly plans to use his upstart little scrubbies.
Since three scrubbies are going to be rotated to play one position, Mattingly is going to rotate based on match-ups, to figure out who plays and when. It will all be based on who is swinging the bat better, and match-ups.
Since Juan Uribe and Jerry Hairston are right handers, and Nick Punto is a switch-hitter, Punto could get more of the majority of the playing time. since he is a switch-hitter. I can’t say whether that is better or worse.
Uribe and Hairston could play against lefties, while Punto could get the nod against right handers. Remember, the Dodgers will be playing most of their games against right handers, especially the first week of the season. After they face Madison Bumgarner of the Giants in the opening series, they might not see another left handed starter for a while, unless they face Jonathon Sanchez in the Pittsburgh series. With a heavy right handed schedule, could we expect to see Punto getting alot of playing time?
According to Don Mattingly, no. I asked him the other day about the third sacker rotation, and he indicated it would be based on match-ups. But not so fast. There is a possibility that Justin Sellers could make the team as the starting shortstop, pushing Luis Cruz back to third base, and our beloved little Scrubbies back to the bench.
What do each of these Scrubbie’s career splits look like? Let’s take a look below.
Jerry Hairston Jr. – vs. lefties .261/.327/.385 24 HR – vs. righties .258/.327/.367 44 HR
Juan Uribe – vs. lefties -.248/.296/.417 43 HR – vs. righties .252/.296/.419 114 HR
Nick Punto – vs. lefties- .242/.325./.322 13 HR – vs. righties .258/.325/.327 0 HR
Jhair hits lefties the best out of the three, and Uribe has hit the most home runs versus right handers. I suppose that doesn’t matter all that much. Although the Dodgers may want to be aware that Uribe is only hitting .170 against his former team. Food for thought. Don Mattingly could be using Jhair and Uribe against left handers. Meanwhile Punto might get plenty of playing time against right handers. But it appears that is unlikely to happen. It’s all going to be based on match-ups.
How do the three fair against the three San Francisco starters we will be facing in the opening series?
Nick Punto has never faced Matt Cain, Madison Bumgarner, or Tim Lincecum.
Juan Uribe versus. Mat Cain-(0 for 3), vs. Madison Bumgarner-(.273/.273/.273 3 for 11)-vs. Tim Lincecum-.231/.333/.308 (3 for 13 with 1 double)
Jerry Hairston vs. Matt Cain-( 4 for 14-.286/.412/.429, with two doubles) vs. Madison Bumgarner-(..429/.429/.571-3 for 7 one double, and one RBI). vs.-Tim Lincecum (2 for 4 with a walk)
According to the numbers, Jhair has had the best numbers against the three opposing starters the Dodgers will face in the opening series against the hated Giants. Punto has never even faced any of those guys, since he has spent the last five or six years in the American League. Except for his one season with the Cardinals. What do you think of the Scrubbie rotation this season? Whether you love them or hate them, the Scrubbies are probably here to stay.
Join us next week as we document another Scrubbie adventure, on another episode of Scrubbies Weekly. Until next time Dodger fans…..