The Lud, The Load and the lineup
TLR has put Ryan Ludwick in the two spot in the order the past two nights. I understand his thought process — he loves that "danger" in the No. 2 hole, the threat of a guy who can hit the ball out of the park.
There’s just one problem. Ludwick does some things very well — like hit for power. There are other things that he doesn’t do nearly so well — like get on base. He’s a perfect choice for the fifth or sixth or seventh spot when he plays, much like I feel about Juan Encarnacion.
So what to do about the two spot? Here’s a novel idea — what about Scott Rolen? The middle of the order doesn’t seem like the best place for Rolen right now; his power is clearly missing, whether it’s due to a physical issue or something else. But in the context of this lineup, he’s doing a great job of getting on base. A .344 OBP isn’t all that special, but it’s better than a lot of what his teammates are doing. So why not give it a look?
On a night like tonight, when it’s a LHP and he sits Duncan, you could go something like Taguchi-Rolen-Pujols-Encarnacion-Ludwick-Molina-middle infielder-middle infielder. When it’s a RHP, Taguchi-Rolen-Pujols-Duncan-Encarnacion-etc.
-M., with the iPod on shuffle.