Apr 21, 2014; Seattle, WA, USA; Seattle Mariners center fielderAbraham Almonte
(36) hits a 2-run double against the Houston Astros during the fifth inning at Safeco Field. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports
Abraham Almonte hadn’t been producing offensively with any consistency. He played well in September of the 2o13 season as a late season call up.
But he didn’t hit during Spring Training, and he hasn’t hit in the Mariners first 22 games of the season. And finally, today, he has been moved down in the lineup.
What’s more interesting is that he is being replaced by Michael Saunders at the top of the lineup in tonight’s game. Saunders has been platooning with Corey Hart and Stefen Romero in right field all season, more often than not coming on as a defensive replacement in the late innings.
Saunders’ triple slash is .176/.237/.265. That’s worse than Almonte’s, though Saunders doesn’t lead baseball in strikeouts.
It will be interesting to see what the M’s do with the first two spots in the order for the coming weeks. Tonight it’s Saunders and Almonte. But who else could it be? So far this season none of the speedier guys have made any sort of statement that they ought to be hitting leadoff.
Keep an eye on how this plays out tonight.
And who knows, maybe we should just bat Robinson Cano leadoff?