That said, somebody has to hit second. Mauer is limited to one lineup slot, and while I’d rather it be second, third is acceptable. And Suzuki is hardly the only guy who’s in a more important lineup slot than he deserves.
In that light, Gardenhire’s insistence on hitting Kubel higher than Arcia is frustrating. Arcia can — will — be a big part of the next good Twins team. Kubel will not. I’d rather see Arcia get the extra at-bats.
I’ve said this repeatedly this winter in the blog: The Twins won’t have a truly productive lineup until they can get Dozier out of the top of the order. He spent most of 2013 hitting first, second or third. He should, in a good lineup, be in the bottom third of the order.
That won’t happen with this crew.
Edward Thoma (344-6377; firstname.lastname@example.org) maintains his Baseball Outsider blog at fpbaseballoutsider.blogspot.com. Follow him on Twitter @bboutsider.