Fredi Gonzalez has decided to shake things up with the Braves’ lineup for Game 1 of today’s doubleheader against the Mets, moving Chipper Jones into the second spot.
Last time Jones hit second in the order? Way back in 1996, when he did so four times as a 24-year-old.
In the 15 seasons since here’s the breakdown of Jones’ starts in each batting order spot:
Martin Prado has batted second for the Braves in 43 of the past 50 games, but he’s in the No. 6 spot for Game 1 today.
Pedro Moura of The Athletic reports that Dodgers starter Alex Wood plans to pitch out of the stretch throughout the 2018 season. Wood got the idea when he watched Nationals starter Stephen Strasburg pitch against the Dodgers.
Wood, 27, finished last season 16-3 with a 2.72 ERA and a 151/38 K/BB ratio in 152 1/3 innings. That’s a mighty fine season, one in which many pitchers would not dare to mess with something that isn’t broken.
Interestingly, Wood indeed has had better results with runners on base — when he would pitch out of the stretch — as opposed to the bases being empty, with a respective OPS allowed of .523 versus .684, respectively. Over his career, he has allowed a .617 OPS with runners on and .706 with the bases empty.
In response to Moura’s tweet about Wood, retired pitchers Dan Haren and Jered Weaver took the opportunity to burn themselves. Haren tweeted, “I pitched a few seasons completely out of the stretch actually, just not by choice.” Weaver responded, “Sometimes I would just step off and throw the ball in the gap myself because I knew the hitter would do it anyways.”