Blog Entry

Delmon Young thrives with protection in ALDS

Posted on: October 7, 2011 12:31 am

By Matt Snyder

Delmon Young had just four home runs in 325 plate appearances for the Twins before being traded in August. He was waiver-wire fodder at the time. The Tigers picked him up and immediately started batting him third, even as many in the baseball world scratched their heads over the placement. But with Miguel Cabrera and Victor Martinez behind him, Young would hit eight home runs in just 168 at-bats after the trade in the regular season. And in the ALDS win over the Yankees, Young was a star.

In the five ALDS games, Young hit .316 with three home runs four RBI and he even walked as many times as he struck out. That's an insane movement from a guy who has struck out 514 times and walked just 125 in his career in the regular season.

Tigers 3, Yankees 2
Conventional wisdom says that a manager should hit his best hitter third. That would easily be Caberera on the Tigers. And I believe the majority of the managers in the bigs would bat Cabrera third and Martinez cleanup. Young would probably hit somewhere from fifth to seventh for most guys. Instead, what Leyland has done with Young is noticed he's managing a guy who swings the bat too much and rarely takes pitches. In his sixth major-league season, Young isn't likely to break that habit, so instead, Leyland put him in position to see more strikes. No one wants to pitch to Cabrera and Martinez with men on base, so Young is seeing strikes. And he's making pitchers pay for them.

Now, the question turns to Young's status. He left Game 5 with an injured oblique and that is bad news. The Tigers will be crossing their fingers it's a very mild oblique issue, because he could be lost for the postseason if it's a significant strain. Evan Longoria of the Rays missed a month with an oblique strain earlier this season, for example.

If Young is healthy enough to play, he'll remain in the three-hole, with that nice protection behind him. And if he continues to see strikes, he'll continue to produce for the Tigers. Even if he's not a conventional three-hole hitter.

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 20, 2011 6:00 am
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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 17, 2011 9:56 pm
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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 7, 2011 1:03 pm

Delmon Young thrives with protection in ALDS

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Since: Jul 30, 2009
Posted on: October 7, 2011 8:46 am

Delmon Young thrives with protection in ALDS

Yeah well the only I have to say about Delmon Young is at the time of the trade the Tigers had a 1 game lead in the division. They ended the season 15 games up and division champs. He changed all pitchers mind set facing the Tigers line up.

Since: Mar 19, 2008
Posted on: October 7, 2011 8:26 am

Delmon Young thrives with protection in ALDS

Demon Young may be a decent hitter, but his huge lack of defensive skills, to put it politely, makes him more of a liability than someone who hits fewer home runs and has a lesser batting average.  He's the newest version of Dick Stewart who used to be called, "Dr. Strangeglove" ... and that's only the case when Young even gets his glove somewhere near the ball.  By the way, did I mention he's one of the worst baserunners in modern baseball history???

Since: Sep 1, 2010
Posted on: October 7, 2011 7:08 am

Delmon Young thrives with protection in ALDS

The only thing  I have to say about Young he was a poor fielder in Minnesota he would have stayed if not for that.

Since: Sep 13, 2006
Posted on: October 7, 2011 7:07 am

Delmon Young thrives with protection in ALDS

In the early 2000's the Twins got rid of David ortiz who later became Boston's Big Papi.  It seems they have done it again with "the big Delmonte" Delmon Young.

The Twins have a way of letting blue chippers blossom in other organizations.  Target Feild will forever be cursed by power hitters until something is done (move in the damn fences!). 

What is it with the Twins teachings that keeps power hitters from grooming in their organization?  Joe Mauer somehow goes from 26 homers at the Metrodome to 4 a year ago at Target Field? 

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