It’s always cute when managers put fast guys with poor on base skills in the leadoff spot. Cute but dumb because, as the saying goes, you can’t steal first base. Joe Maddon realizes that because he’s putting Carlos Pena in the leadoff spot tonight:
I like it. Even if he is a first baseman. Even if he is a power threat. He has a .352 lifetime OBP and it’s at .353 this season.
Here’s a list of every first baseman who led off a game. The all-time leader is Lu Blue. Not to be confused with Blue Lou from “The Blues Brothers.”
Both a Kinsler and a Kintzler made headlines at the Winter Meetings. After the Angels acquired second baseman Ian Kinsler from the Tigers, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Nationals have inked reliever Brandon Kintzler to a two-year contract, pending a physical.
Kintzler, 33, spent the latter half of his 2017 campaign with the Nationals after the Twins traded him. Between both clubs, he put up an aggregate 3.03 ERA with 29 saves and a 39/16 K/BB ratio in 71 1/3 innings.
Sean Doolittle will handle save situations for the Nationals. Kintzler and Ryan Madson will bridge the gap to him in the seventh and eighth innings.