Declaring that "this is not a year that we’ll tinker much" with the lineup, Lou Piniella let it be known on Friday that he's considering hitting Fukudome-Lee-Ramirez in the 3-4-5 positions.
Lou's logic is that letting Fukudome bat third, as he did for the Chunichi Dragons, will help with his adjustment to life and baseball in the U.S. As for A-Ram and D-Lee...
"I know Ramirez feels very comfortable in the five hole. I'm sure Derrek will do what's best for the team. The fourth spot won't be a problem for him."Over the course of his career, Ramirez has hit fourth more than in any other lineup position (43% of his career plate appearances). Based on OPS numbers, however, he has actually been most productive in the third hole: hitting 3rd, 903 OPS; hitting 4th, 841; hitting 5th, 865; hitting 6th, 901.
Derrek Lee has actually spent more of his time in the 6-hole (36% of his career PA's) than anywhere else, but his sweet spot has been in the third position: hitting 3rd, 955 OPS; 4th, 807; 5th, 853; and 6th, 870.