San Francisco Giants bat Emmanuel Burriss in the 9th spot
Bruce Bochy has played Aubrey Huff at second base.
He’s had Brett Pill play third base.
If Nate Schierholtz had gotten at hit Tuesday night, he would have been looking at playing Hector Sanchez at third base.
And now, Bochy is having Emmanuel Burriss hitting ninth in the batting order, behind Madison Bumgarner.
Bochy tried to spin the move in his pre-game comments.
“I’ve done this once before,” Bochy said. “The way it’s set up, I did put Madison in the eighth spot. It gives you two leadoff hitters, like Tony (La Russa) talked about that.”
What?!? Two leadoff hitters?!? In what world would Bochy, or anyone, think about having Burriss bat leadoff?
“It’s not something I plan to do on a consistent basis,” Bochy continued. “But against a left-hander, Manny can play his game, which is speed, from the ninth spot.”
Um, yeah, right.
And if you believe that, Bochy might have a bridge he’d like to sell you.
Bochy is doing this move for one pure and simple reason: Against left-handed pitching, Bumgarner is a better hitter.
Burriss this season vs. left-handed pitching is 0 for 11 with one walk and one sacrifice.
It’s probably why he tried to bunt with two on and two out in the sixth inning against LHP Christian Friedrich on Tuesday.
He’s a career .260 hitter against LHP. But last season, he was .143 vs. LHP in 30 PAs.
Now Burriss suffered two foot injuries in 2009 and 2010. But those injuries would not impact his RH batting. We’re guessing the league has a book on Burriss from the right side, and Burriss hasn’t read it yet.
Meanwhile, Bumgarner is 1 for 12 with double and an RBI vs. left-handed pitching. That double came against Milwaukee’s Randy Wolf on May 5. Over his career, he hits .111 vs. lefties (3 for 27).
It’s just another sign that Burriss’ tenure with the Giants may soon be coming to an end.
The first sign came when the Giants called up a second baseman from Fresno in Charlie Culberson.
If Freddy Sanchez can ever get healthy, the Giants may be willing to part with Burriss. The Giants liked Burriss for his versatility on defense. But Joaquin Arias has shown he can fill that road … and hit.
And that’s the ONLY reason Bochy drew up the lineup this way … because Arias needs one more day to recover from a bruised forearm after being hit by a pitch.