Leading off…Drew Stubbs
When asked if he had settled on a leadoff man with three weeks to go, Reds manager Dusty Baker took a long pause before answering.
“Probably Stubbs, still,” Baker said. “If it doesn’t work, I can go to somebody else. There’s a chance I was going to go with somebody else sooner or later anyway. So far, our best leadoff hitter isn’t quite ready for the big leagues.”
Baker was likely referring to Dave Sappelt, who actually led off on Friday vs. Texas. Stubbs batted second.
Stubbs has the speed but his offensive numbers didn’t lend to the leadoff spot last season. In 34 games in the top spot, he batted .220 with a .324 OBP. Overall, he had 22 homers, and 168 strikeouts.
*Coming into the day, Joey Votto was batting .125 with eight strikeouts in 16 at-bats. Baker had zero concern about Votto.
“He started out bad ever since I’ve known him,” Baker said. “The first year here, I didn’t know what to think. I liked what I saw in BP. I liked his regular season stats. It just didn’t equate to what I was seeing in Spring Training. It takes him a while to get his timing and zero in on his concentration. I’m not worried about him. I’ve seen guys every spring kill it in Spring Training but when they put that third deck on top, wouldn’t hit a lick.”