Today's Leadoff Man, brought to you by a starting pitcher
Here are the top 8 performances by hitters batting first in the order in the AL:
Texas would be Ian Kinsler; Seattle is Ichiro; I don't care about the Yankees; Baltimore is Brian Roberts; Toronto is Marco Scutaro; Detroit is Curtis Granderson; the Angels have Chone Figgins; and the Twinkies have Brendan Harris.
Even though the Rangers have a comfortable lead in the West, they always need pitching. What would it take to get Kinsler? We ain't getting Ichiro, we ain't trading with New York, and Baltimore is already out of it. But what would it take to get Scutaro, or better yet, Aaron Hill? Would would Granderson cost? His OBP is low, but he does hit for power. How about Figgins or Harris? What would it take for either of them?
See, Uncle Lou can talk all he wants about making changes, but until he gets a real leadoff hitter, nothing he does is really going to make much difference, and thing is? I bet he realizes this, more than you think. Maybe THAT's why the man looks constipated - because he's trapped by this roster. This plays right into the hands of all of you who want to blame Hendry for this disaster, and while I personally excuse him for the bustout formerly known as Fukudome, and think that perhaps the Bradley deal still might turn out ok, in my opinion Hendry's biggest mistake of all is not getting a legit leadoff man.
The ultimate solution prominently involves changing Alfonso Soriano's job description, but that isn't going to happen unless we get a legit leadoff man on the roster. And that, in itself, isn't going to happen without giving up one of the members of the rotation. And this in itself worries me, because it just occurred to me a possible reason why the Cubs are looking at Pedro - as a stopgap measure while Ryan Dempster takes time off to handle his family issues. This is the only decent thing to do, I believe. So the rotation is thinner than it appears, but we really have nothing else on hand that will attract a major league leadoff hitter in return.
Unless you think we can somehow swindle Andrew McCutchen from the Pirates.