Clayton Kershaw, extraneous immortal
Last week, I was agitating for Clayton Kershaw to be a National League All-Star.
This week, I was agitating for Clayton Kershaw to actually start the All-Star Game.
Then I saw the American League lineup. Which is comprised, for first time in history, of nine right-handed hitters.
Until Ned Yost goes to his bench, Bruce Bochy should just feed the Junior Leaguers a steady diet of righties, and he’s got plenty of them. First Zack Greinke — for just one inning, probably and alas — but then there’s Gerrit Cole and Jacob deGrom and A.J. Burnett and Carlos Martinez and Shelby Miller and Michael Wacha. And those are just the starting pitchers! Bochy’s staff includes only three lefties: Kershaw, Madison Bumgarner, and Aroldis Chapman.
And what can Yost do about it?
By my count, Yost has seven lefty- or switch-hitting bench guys: Jason Kipnis, Prince Fielder, Mark Teixeira, Brett Gardner, Stephen Vogt, Mike Moustakas, and Brock Holt. The over/under on Hall of Famers in that group is 0 (no offense, American League bench guys). But if you want to watch for one thing Tuesday, see if Yost manages to get his few potent lefty bats into action when Bruce Bochy does not have one of his few lefty arms ready for action.
Of course single baseball games rarely go according to form. But form suggests the out-of-balance American League lineup is going to have some problems.