The batting average may not necessarily be there but there is no question the Boston Red Sox will be leaving a lot of power on the bench when the St. Louis Cardinals host Game 3, 4 and 5 (if necessary) of the World Series. There is no designated hitter since it is a National League ballpark, which means the Red Sox will have a difficult decision to make regarding David Ortiz and Mike Napoli.
Boston needs both players in the game to be effective. As I said before, the batting average is not necessarily a factor. With that being said, Ortiz and Napoli provide a ridiculous amount of power. Each player can change the outcome of a game with one swing of the bat. In fact, they have combined to hit five of the Red Sox’s six total home runs during the postseason.
Since they both play first base, and it does not make sense to suit them up anywhere else on the field, Boston will be forced to watch each player sit at least one game. Obviously, this means the Red Sox will have a very potent pinch hitter. However, I think everyone can agree the team would prefer to have both players get more at-bats.
Exactly how does Boston plan to deal with their predicament?
“Well with David going to first base, which he will when we get over to St. Louis, how many days he’ll play in those three games there remains to be seen,” Red Sox manager John Farrell said, according to RedSox.com. “It is different for us. Personally, when we go into National League ballparks, I think we’re in a greater disadvantage than the reverse of that when National League teams come in here.”
It will be interesting to see how much it will affect Boston not having one of the two players in the lineup. Not to mention, having Ortiz play defense could be a big factor. It proves just how important Game 1 and 2 are.