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Aug 19, 2014; Miami, FL, USA; Miami Marlins center fielder Marcell Ozuna (13) connects for a solo home during the fourth inning against the Texas Rangers at Marlins Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Marlins Making Lineup Changes

Mike Redmond has been doing some tinkering lately. I am not saying that the Marlins offense shouldn’t be tinkered with, but I wanted to take a closer look to see if the moves that he is making are smart based on the stats.

The Miami Marlins have rolled out a lineup that generally looks like this; Christian Yelich hits lead-off, whatever second baseman that Miami has playing that day hitting second, (because Redmond only bats his second baseman in the second spot…) Giancarlo Stanton hitting third, and Casey McGehee hitting fourth.

This was a particularly effective lineup during the first half of the season as McGehee was on an absolute tear and it seemed like every time that Stanton was intentionally walked, Casey came through with a quality at-bat. Things seemed to change after the all-star break for Casey and he has been in a slump. Combine that with Garrett Jones’ season long funk and it seems that Redmond might be looking for answers in different places.

Enter Marcell Ozuna. Last night Ozuna moved into the clean-up spot with McGehee sliding down a notch to five, and Jarred Saltalamacchia hitting 6th. Redmond got really crazy when he sent out Jeff Baker to first base, but hitting in the two slot. I suppose that since Baker is a capable second baseman, that he still qualifies for that spot, or maybe Redmond made a mistake on the lineup, either way it worked….sort of.

The good news is that the Marlins offense was excellent. The Fish pushed across seven runs on the night, including a Stanton 3-run home run. Unfortunately, the two obvious changes failed to make much of an impact.

Sure Ozuna hit a sacrifice fly, but that was pretty much all he did on an 0-4 night. Jeff Baker was even worse going 0-5 with 3 strikeouts. This was Baker’s second consecutive game, and likely his last for a while after his performance.

It is absolute foolishness to base the success of a change on one night though, and I decided to go back over the last 30 games to see if a change in lineup was warranted. What I found was much of what we already know.

McGehee is struggling. There is no other way around it. a slash line of .228/.301/.317 will earn you tickets back to Japan let alone out of the clean-up spot. Keeping him batting fifth may be more of an indictment on who could take his spot than a vote of confidence in Casey.

Ozuna seems like he has been hot of late, but the numbers don’t necessarily back that up. He has 4 home runs over his last 30 games, but only a slugging pct. of .434. Not exactly inspiring for the 4th spot.

Salty’s OBP has been improving recently, but that seems to have had a negative effect on his power as he is posting a bizarre .370 OBP compared to a .328 slugging. That alone is incredible.

Donovan Solano doesn’t have any of the slash number above .300, so he probably shouldn’t even be in the lineup, especially when compared with Jordany Valdespin’s .226/293/.340.

These stats are informative first in realizing that Mike Redmond doesn’t have a lot to work with currently. Jeff Baker is as good as any option in the second spot, and Marcell Ozuna has the power to be a cleanup hitter, but maybe not the discipline to hit in the top 5 of a lineup.

What do you think? Give us your best Marlins lineup in the comments below and we will be sure to comment our thoughts on them.

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Tags: Marcell Ozuna Miami Marlins

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