BOSTON — The Red Sox platoon situation heading into the postseason seems to be taking shape.
Chris Young was in the lineup for the third time in four games on Tuesday, squaring off with a left-handed starting pitcher for the second straight night.
He seems to be on his last leg.
Historically at his best facing southpaws, Young just hasn’t gotten it done this year, with a .186/.301/.258 line against them. A respected veteran, Young has been much more competent against righties.
But in the second half, he’s slashing .171/.277/.341 — that's against both lefties and righties.
"No decisions are final here, but felt like these were two games in which those opportunities present themselves,” Farrell said of the choice to play Young on Monday and Tuesday. “You're looking to put guys in a position where they're had a lot of success in the past, and we recognize the reverse to the splits with Chris this year. But felt like left-handers that we'll see, trying to find … the best combination available to us to attack left-handers. We felt it was the spot to put Chris to get some timing, see consistent at-bats against left-handers. We'll see where this goes from here.”
Farrell has previously noted that at this time of year, he’s paying attention to the hot hand. It sounds like Young still has a chance to get hot and make an impression, but not exactly a good chance.
“If a week and a half constitutes a guy getting hot, yeah, that can have a major impact,” Farrell said. “But I think I have to be honest with every guy down there, and certainly with our approach. You put the best combinations on the field that you think can win today.”
Against righty pitching in the playoffs, that means Hanley Ramirez is not going to be playing first base. That means against a righty, the designated hitter spot is likely going to be for Ramirez, or perhaps an ailing Dustin Pedroia if his left knee keeps him away from second base, or Eduardo Nunez, if his right knee is still bothersome.
“If it’s a right-hander it’s going to be Mitch Moreland at first base,” Farrell said. “So, I think the majority of the [playoff] starters are going to be right-handed.”
If the Sox face the Astros in the first round, Dallas Keuchel is the only lefty starter for them to worry about.