Mattingly Hopeful Ramirez’s Offense Makes Up For Defense
On top of having a subpar season at the plate, Hanley Ramirez has had his share of troubles with the glove this season. Not considered to be an elite defender by any means, Ramirez has at times been painful to watch at shortstop.
His limited range has turned routine plays into adventures or balls have simply bypassed him. In Tuesday’s loss, Ramirez committed two errors in the second inning that led to three runs and an early deficit for the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Compounding matters, Ramirez’s first error came with two outs on what should have been the final out of the inning. Following the loss, manager Don Mattingly said the errors wouldn’t lead to any changes as it’s something the Dodgers have dealt with all season, via Mark Saxon of ESPN LA:
We’ve been playing like this all year. He made an error tonight and it ended up being a costly one tonight,” Mattingly said. “It’s not something where, all of a sudden, you just change what you’ve done all year. This is what we’ve been doing trying to get offense from that spot. He’s a guy who can do it — gets four hits last night, drives in a couple runs. It just happened to be a costly one tonight.”
The errors also came one night after the Dodgers committed three errors on one play. However, they came in the sixth inning with Clayton Kershaw on the mound and the Dodgers holding a comfortable lead.
While Ramirez’s miscues were certainly costly in a game the Dodgers lost by three runs, he’d been much improved since returning from the disabled list. The 30 year old showed a better ability to get to hard-hit balls and hadn’t committed an error since Aug. 24.
To make matters worse, Ramirez finished 0-for-4 in Tuesday’s game, including a final at-bat that came with two outs in the ninth inning and him representing the tying run. As Ramirez’s defense has been an issue, his inconsistency at the plate has left the Dodgers in a difficult position.
The Dodgers have multiple infielders who rate higher defensively than Ramirez does. However, none of them pose the same threat with the bat. While the soon-to-be free agent works to find himself at the plate, Monday’s 4-for-5 with two RBIs effort serve as a reminder of what he’s capable of.
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