With Scott Kazmir joining some combination of Clayton Kershaw, Hyun-jin Ryu, Brett Anderson and Alex Wood (along with righty Kenta Maeda), the Dodgers’ rotation is strongly left-handed, MLB.com’s Tracy Ringolsby notes. Historically, Ringolsby argues, there’s been little evidence that relying heavily on left-handed starters is a disadvantage. He notes that the 1965 Dodgers, for example, won the World Series with a team that got 112 starts from lefties. That’s not to say that having a lefty-heavy rotation creates an obvious advantage either, however — the 2004 Royals started lefties 108 times and lost 104 games that season. Here are more quick notes from around the game.
- The Tigers’ lineup and bench, meanwhile, are heavily right-handed, but they’re designed that way on in order to give Brad Ausmus plenty of late-inning flexibility, Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press writes. Many of the Tigers’ key offensive players (like Miguel Cabrera, J.D. Martinez and Ian Kinsler, all of them righties who hit righties very well last year) are not candidates to be lifted for a pinch-hitter, regardless of the handedness of the pitcher. In fact, the only regular who might be a candidate to be lifted is lefty Anthony Gose, who could be removed if a left-handed reliever is on the hill. That means the Tigers simply don’t need many lefty hitters.
- Indians manager Terry Francona did not want the team to lose any of its best starting pitching, and the team isn’t close to a significant deal to add a hitter, writes Terry Pluto of the Plain Dealer. They will, however, continue to look for relievers. Pluto also notes that the Indians preferred Mike Napoli (with whom they recently agreed to terms) at first base rather than fellow free agent Justin Morneau because Napoli is right-handed.