Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez, looking to get more life into a line-up that has scored only three runs the past two games against the Giants, has shaken things up.
Here’s today’s batting order against the Giants:
Jordan Schafer, who has done a good job leading off, (.294 BA, .419 OBP) will get the start today in right field, with Justin Upton moving back over to left. I like what Schafer has done this season, and am glad to see that Fredi is continuing to get Schafer into the line-up against right-handed pitching.
Ramiro Pena gets the start at short today, as Andrelton Simmons gets a much deserved day off. Pena has good speed, and I like having a switch-hitter into the number two hole.
The big change in the line-up is McCann hitting third, and Justin Upton fourth. Good move to have Upton hitting between McCann and Freeman. Teams have been pitching around Upton, this gives him protection front and back.
On the interview I did Thursday on James Thurn’s radio show, I mentioned moving Upton into the fourth spot in the order, and having Heyward bat third when he comes back. Heyward did a real good job in the three hole last season, and I love his speed in that spot. I also like having Upton bat fourth.
B.J. Upton starts again today in center field. Despite hitting only .157 on the year with a .248 OBP, he’s gotten a hit in three of the past four games so perhaps B.J. is starting to find his way. Let’s hope.