Game 18, Tigers at Mariners
Lefty Maroth v lefty Washburn, 7:05 FSN. This means we’ll likely see the not-a-platoon platoon with Bloomquist in center field and the backup infielder in Tacoma (well, that’s not entirely fair– you just put Reed in center and move Bloomquist in)(unless Bloomquist gets injured)(“Oh I wish” is not an appropriate response to that last parenthetical).
I disagree with the platoon arrangement not because I particularly think Reed’s a better hitter against lefties, or degrading the defense is that massive.
It’s that you don’t really know if a player’s truly vulnerable to one side or another for a while. It’s not as if Reed came up through the minors with scouting reports that said he was going to need a platoon partner, or was easily neutralized by left-handers.
It’s that if he’s not hitting against left-handers, he’s certainly not going to improve if he only sees them once every month. I’d like to see at least three seasons of being vulnerable to lefties before I write him off, especially since there’s nothing obvious in his approach that breaks down.
There are many left-handed players who were thought to be helpless against lefties because they did poorly in their rookie year (or even their second year), and later became good hitters who didn’t require platoon partners. If fear of Reed not hitting means he never grows, that’s a loss for the team and Reed.