Rays News

10 Possible Tampa Bay Rays Defensive Alignments Versus Lefties

By Robbie Knopf
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This is a pretty standard lineup that the Rays could use against lefties, but it has one clear flaw: both James Loney and Kevin Kiermaier are playing. Loney performed well against lefties in 2013, but 2014 saw him go back to his previous struggles against them. Kiermaier, meanwhile, hit them decently in the minor leagues but couldn’t handle them at all in the majors last year.

Kiermaier and Loney easily have the best defense of any Rays options at their positions and that is a compelling argument, especially for Kiermaier. However, the Rays lineup needs as many capable hitters as it can get for each game, and this alignment doesn’t even put Logan Forsythe out on the field along with Beckham.

Both Loney and Kiermaier deserve chances to prove themselves worthy for more time, but the Rays will try to have only have one of them in the lineup for a good portion of their games against lefties. With that in mind, this could be the most often used Rays lineup versus lefties, but only by a small margin. Also worth noting is that Franklin would never replace Beckham in this lineup and Wilson would be unlikely to replace Rivera because there would simply be too many offensive questions.