Good morning Birdland! Waking up knowing another beautiful day is on tap, and the Orioles are playing, is such a great feeling! It’ll be 84° today in Cleveland, with a chance of storms, but it’s practically summertime, so that storm threat will be every other day at this point.
Last night, Adam Jones took his hacks from the Leadoff spot for the second game since 2010, where he batted out of the Leadoff spot 67 times. As I mentioned earlier on Twitter, Jones’ stats from the Leadoff hole aren’t really anything to write home about.
Sure I highlighted his strikeouts, and yes he has that many more strikeouts out of the 3 hole because that’s his routine spot in the lineup. I don’t need to hear any “well of course he’s had more K’s there”. I’m aware.
Buck Showalter stated yesterday before the game there were “4 options” with Jones either “leave him where he is, drop him down, give him a day off…”, and then he went on to talk about his sister. We love Buck Showalter! I’m assuming, the 4th option was to bat him out of the Leadoff spot. Buck also went on to question if Jones had ever hit 9th, or 8th, or 7th, 6th, 5th. In other words, he was pretty much saying where does it matter where he has batted before, he’s batting 1st tonight.
Buck’s forward thinking paid off, as Adam Jones went 3-5, with 3 singles, and was the table setter from the get go.
So with the success of last night, the question is posed, “will Adam Jones bat first again tonight?” Honestly, I highly expect to see Jonesy leading off again tonight, but hey, what do I know?
In comparison, our other viable Leadoff candidates this season are:
- Joey Rickard (178 PA .241)
- Manny Machado (536 PA .295)
- Nolan Reimold (185 PA .271)
I highlight these three players because they are honestly are most suitable Leadoff batters. If you remember back to spring training, it was speculated that Hyun Soo Kim could be our Leadoff batter, and dare I say it, Dexter Fowler as well. We all know how that turned out.
Let’s be real here, when all is said and done, Joey Rickard is more than likely going to find himself right back in the Leadoff role, only because Adam Jones will find his stroke again, and Buck will move him in front of Davis in the cleanup role. Nolan Reimold won’t see enough playing time to successfully lock down the Leadoff spot, and Manny Machado is too good out of the 2-hole (35 homers, .282/.331/.453).
So I will ask you the question Birdland, to ponder on up until about 4pm when Buck releases today’s lineup. If you were making the lineup tonight, who would you insert in to the number one spot?