Tuesday, May 8, 2012
Wash's Wisdom: Gut call on Brandon Snyder
By Richard Durrett
BALTIMORE -- Each week we take a look at a decision Rangers manager Ron Washington made and analyze why he made it, and discuss it. Here are a few of them, including his call to put Brandon Snyder in the lineup on Monday:
* Washington said he wasn't even thinking about the fact that Snyder would be playing against his old team Monday. Washington just felt that Snyder could hit left-hander Brian Matusz. So with Adrian Beltre not ready to play third base with his strained left hamstring, Washington opted to go with his gut and play Snyder at third and Michael Young at first. The result was Snyder's career-high six-RBI game in the Rangers' 14-3 win.
A few decisions in Cleveland over the weekend worth noting:
* Washington stuck with Colby Lewis on Friday night to pitch to Johnny Damon despite having left-handed reliever Robbie Ross warmed up and ready. Washington made the decision because Lewis had retired Damon on three previous at-bats. But Damon hit a triple off an 0-1 curveball to give the Indians some breathing room in the seventh inning.
Washington took the blame after the game.
"That one's on me," Washington said. "I was one batter too late."
* The next day, Washington decided to pinch hit Beltre in the 11th inning despite the fact that Beltre's hamstring wasn't healthy enough for him to start. The skipper knew Beltre had a good swing in him. Cleveland manager Manny Acta had reliever Joe Smith intentionally walk Mitch Moreland with two outs to have right-handed pitcher go up against Beltre (who was already on deck, so Acta knew that's who Smith would face).
Beltre, hitting for Alberto Gonzalez, blasted a three-run home run and the Rangers won the game, ending a three-game losing streak. Washington clearly picked the right time in the game to use Beltre.