Feb 24, 2013; Dunedin, FL, USA; Toronto Blue Jays first baseman Adam Lind (26) against the Baltimore Orioles during a spring training game at Florida Auto Exchange Park. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Stop Hitting Lind 5th

The Toronto Blue Jays have all their regulars in the lineup against the Houston Astros today.

I know it’s just Spring Training and that I usually laugh at people who take Spring Training stuff seriously especially in the first week. You really have to be a baseball rookie to do that.

Still when I see Adam Lind hitting 5th in the lineup I panic.

Spring Training or not, anything resembling a big league regular season lineup, let alone the Jays 2013 lineup, should not have Lind hitting 5th.

Say what you want about Cito Gaston and John Farrell but they managed Blue Jays teams that didn’t have a lot of depth in the lineup sometimes so they were forced to hit Lind clean up or 5th.

Now there’s no excuse for that.

We know the Jays lineup is going to start Reyes, Melky, Bautista, and Encarnacion. Every other hitter in the Jays lineup is more qualified than Adam Lind to hit 5th.

Brett Lawrie would probably be the best choice to hit 5th. In Brett Lawrie’s small 168 career games he’s already hit 20 homers and put up a 5.6 WAR. He’ll be just 23 on opening day so it’s a safe bet Lawrie won’t be worse even if he’s not better. Lawrie also gives the Jays speed on the bases in the middle of the order.

If the Blue Jays want a left handed hitter with some power hitting 5th they can hit Colby Rasmus there. In the last 3 seasons Rasmus has been better than Lind and has 60 homeruns. He also has some speed.

Emilio Bonifacio has a career 333 on base percentage. He’s stolen SEVENTY out of 84 bases in just the last 2 seasons. That’s also with injuries and a lack of playing time coming in his way.

J.P. Arencibia’s 278 on base percentage in the last 2 seasons isn’t pretty but his 18 home runs in 2012 and 23 homeruns in 2011 are. JP doesn’t do much besides hit home runs but at 27 years old he’s more likely than Lind to be consistent with his power. JP has put up a 2.1 WAR the last 2 seasons.

Maicer Izturis has put up a 2.9 WAR the last 2 seasons. He also has some speed.

Adam Lind has played in 368 games the last 3 years and has hasn’t put up 1 WAR. He’s lucky to still be a starter on a big league lineup. He’s not the guy who should be hitting 5th when there are better options below him in the lineup. Especially for a team that’s trying to go to the playoffs.

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Tags: Adam Lind Toronto Blue Jays

  • gabrielsyme

    Gah. WAR is a horrible way to optimize batting order, as it’s heavily effected by positional value and defense. And I agree that Lind oughtn’t be hitting 5th. But still, WAR is a completely invalid way of arguing the point.

  • MLuper

    Ridiculous article. Blue Jays aren’t looking for speed in the middle of the lineup, they want a power and rbi guy. A left handed hitter with good homerun potential breaks up all the righty hitters. Lind is that option for the Jays, right now. If it doesnt work they will address it then , but management obviously wants to go with the best potential lineup that will produce the best results. Rasmus? What a joke.

  • Hogan_believe71

    If you had stopped after Brett Lawrie, you may have saved some face. Even Colby Rasmus. Once I read Macier Izturis you lost my respect. That after I somehow made it past Emilio Bonifacio’s name.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kyle.bunte.7 Kyle Bunte

    This has so much wrong with it it’s incredible:
    1: WAR is a comprehensive stat including defence, replacement values and positional adjustment, when constructing a batting order, stats like WRC+ or OPS+ are more useful and then adjusted based on skills like base running, power or contact.
    2. Over the last 3 years Lind has posted WRC+ of 116, 105, and 121 against RHP while compiling 53 HR’s. Brett Lawrie’s career WRC+ vs RHP is 111 which is strong but not significantly better the Lind and with less power. Rasmus at 107 WRC+ is strong for a CF but is heavily weighted by his 2010 numbers which should be weighted less. JPA has a WRC+ of 84 against RHP, he should clearly be hitting 8th. So, if you see Lind hitting 5th against RHP, stop panicking, it is backed up by the numbers if you actually look at them. Panic if he is in the lineup at all against LHP. I’m amazed given all the press and exposure the platooning of Adam Lind has gotten that you are this hung up on it.

    • sean gray

      Well said!

  • Donkopolis

    Macier Izturis hitting fifth?
    Emilio Bonifacio?
    Put on the brakes right there. Lind has proven he can hit with power….both in Triple A and in the “Show”, I can see perhaps Lawrie hitting fifth, but Lind is a much better option to drive in runs as his statistical dip can be related to his nagging injuries the past two years. Hopefully, he is fully healthy now and can complete for a starting job on the Jays.