Josh Hamilton will bat seventh Wednesday for the first time since 2009. (AP photo)
One day after going 0 for 5 with three double-play groundouts and two strikeouts, Josh Hamilton was penciled into the seventh slot of the batting order for the first time since 2009.
Angels manager Mike Scioscia indicated that Hamilton will stay there for as long as the slump continues. Sixty-nine games into his five-year, $133 million contract with the Angels, Hamilton is batting .213 with 73 strikeouts.
“It’ll be good for him to get out of the middle of the lineup, protecting Mike (Trout), protecting Albert (Pujols),” Scioscia said.
Brendan Harris went five weeks without a hit before Monday. You’re forgiven for missing it.
For the Angels’ utility infielder, it was nothing too alarming, nothing worthy of time at Triple-A to rediscover his stroke — he’s out of options, anyway.
Over those five weeks, Harris played all of 12 games and went 0 for 27.
Mike Trout (right) was chosen an American League All-Star in 2012 despite not making his debut until April 28.
In hindsight, it would seem unjust if Mike Trout wasn’t an All-Star in 2012. In case you forgot: Second in the MVP voting, American League Rookie of the Year, 30 home runs, 49 steals, 129 runs scored, .326/.399/.564 slash line, 10.9 bWAR, yada, yada, yada …
Yet when All-Star game voting opened a year ago, on April 20, 2012, Mike Trout was in Triple-A. His first game of the season was eight days away. Ten days into the balloting, on May 1, Trout was batting .091. By June 1, he had five home runs and the pacesetter, Oakland A’s outfielder Josh Reddick, had 14.
So you wonder if Bruce Bochy would have wanted Trout, if by some strange reason the San Francisco Giants manager was in charge of the American League squad. Bochy explained his theory in a radio interview earlier today when asked about Yasiel Puig, the Dodgers outfielder who is putting up Trout-like numbers (better than that, even) through his first 13 major-league games.
Angels manager Mike Scioscia offered some clarification Monday for Josh Hamilton‘s somewhat unexpected day off Sunday against the New York Yankees.
Hamilton reportedly didn’t know he was sitting out the 6-5 loss, while Scioscia said it was previously scheduled.
“Josh knew we were going to try to stay away from him,” he said. “Trust me, he needed a day.”
Physically or mentally?
Hamilton, who is batting .213 this season, was passed over as a possible pinch hitter in the ninth inning Sunday in favor of Brad Hawpe and J.B. Shuck.
Monday, Hamilton was penciled into the second spot in the lineup against the Seattle Mariners.
Asked if Hamilton could continue to play through his physical issues this week, Scioscia said uninspiringly, “I hope so.”