The Process Versus Indians Hitters | The Process Report

The Process Versus Indians Hitters

Sonnanstine returns to the rotation just in time for…

Grady Sizemore Left .675 .873
Asdrubal Cabrera Switch .771 .727
Shin-Soo Choo Left .756 .961
Carlos Santana* Switch .582 1.002
Shelley Duncan Right .784 .603
Orlando Cabrera Right .741 .672
Michael Brantley* Left .653 .646
Matt LaPorta* Right .647 .709
Jack Hannahan Left .623 .680
Lou Marson Right .727 .562
Adam Everett Right .720 .524
Austin Kearns Right .630 .707
Travis Hafner Left .679 .816

(Three-year samples used when possible)
*Career numbers because of small sample size in recent years. These tables all exclude 2011 stats
(Favors means the split is +/- .020 points)

Matchup favors LHP: Sizemore, Choo, Santana, LaPorta, Hannahan, Kearns, Hafner
Matchup favors RHP: Cabrera, Duncan. O. Cabrera, Marson, Everett
Matchup is a push: Brantley
(Credit to Chris St. John for the data)

Analysis after the jump…

The Indians have one of the better offenses in the American League and the top offense at home in either league. On paper, they look like a problem for the right-handed heavy pitching staff of the Rays; however, they have fared better against lefties so far. Tampa Bay will throw two righties in the series (Andy Sonnanstine and James Shields) with left-hander David Price sandwiched in between. With Jake McGee in Durham, Cesar Ramos remains as the lone lefty in the bullpen.

Since his 2011 debut, Grady Sizemore has looked like the player he was back from 2006-2008. Despite just 79 plate appearances, he already has 15 extra-base hits including five home runs. Meanwhile, the surge in power coincides with weaker discipline. Sizemore has abandoned the walk and is expanding his zone a bit. The results have worked so far; however, the process can be attacked. He has whiffed on a number of changeups and curveballs – which is good for James Shields – as well as cut-fastballs and sliders (SSS) – which is good for Andy Sonnanstine and David Price.

One way to neutralize the left-handed batters in the Indians lineup is changing the defensive alignment. In the past we’ve seen Joe Maddon employ some radical shifts against Travis Hafner. In addition to Hafner, we could also see some movement for Grady Sizemore, Shin-Soo Choo, and even Jack Hannahan.

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