< Back to front page Text size +

Francona on lineup shuffle

Posted by Michael Vega, Globe Staff  June 12, 2007 05:10 PM

E-mail this article

Invalid E-mail address
Invalid E-mail address

Sending your article

Terry Francona said before tonight's game he contemplated making a lineup shift during the Sox recent road trip to Oakland and Arizona, but waited until the team returned to Fenway before announcing that he was moving second baseman Dustin Pedroia to his leadoff man over shortstop Julio Lugo, who had struggled with a .247 on-base percentage and hit .130 (12 for 92) in his last 22 games.

Pedroia, who has hit .404 (38-94) in his last 29 games, was penciled in as the lead-off man for tonight's Interleague game against the Rockies.

``Earlier in the year, we tried to protect him a little bit,'' Francona said of Pedroia. ``We don't want to overwhelm guys and give them more than they're ready to handle. I think he's proven he's going to get on base, he's going to get on base, he's going to give you a good at-bat, and he's going to swing at strikes for the most part and if he doesn't swing at strikes, he usually fouls it.

``He's a big part of our ballclub and we value guys getting on base in the front and middle of our order,'' Francona added. ``Putting Coco [Crisp] and Lugo towards the bottom, even if they end up being together some nights, that can also work in our favor.

``If they're not getting on base right now as much as they want, the stolen bases are still good and we can free them up to run a little bit more when they're at the bottom [of the order].

``My point is that we want to try and increase the positives and decrease the negatives, that's pretty much what we're trying to do,'' Francona explained. ``Again, you never know who's going to get hot and who's going to get cold, but the possibility of Pedroia and [Kevin] Youkilis seeing a lot of pitches and getting on base, should help us.''

E-mail this article

Invalid E-mail address
Invalid E-mail address

Sending your article

archives

browse this blog

by category