MLB's 10 Most Worthless Hitters Against Lefty Pitchers
The end of the second month of baseball is upon us, and with that comes a list of some of the best (and worst) trends so far in 2011.
The 10 players on this list have proven thus far to be quite ineffective against southpaws. Lefties have always been harder to hit for some, but these 10 hitters have proven this year that hitting left-handers is even tougher than usual.
Brandon Inge, Detroit Tigers
The Tigers third baseman made it to the All-Star Game in 2009 but has since fallen off. He's hitting only .201 with one home run and 12 RBI.
Against lefties this year, Inge is only hitting .234 in 47 at-bats. He has just three RBI, and though his one home run did come off a left-hander, he only has 11 hits.
Jorge Posada, New York Yankees
Jorge Posada has had a very tumultuous 2011 season in New York, at one point already contemplating leaving baseball entirely. He has had arguments with his manager, but perhaps his biggest sin in the eyes of Yankees fans is hitting production against lefty pitching.
In 27 at bats so far in 2011, Posada has gone hitless against southpaws, including 0 RBI and a .182 OBP. He has struck out in 41 percent of those at bats, and has looked completely lost from a side of the plate he once used as a weapon.
A career .291 hitter against lefty hurlers--in comparison to .265 against righties--it is strange to see Posada struggle so mightily this season. It's impossible to do any worse than a .000 batting average.
He will have to hope for a quick turnaround, as DH duty can be taken away from him if Andruw Jones and Eric Chavez form a successful platoon dynamic upon Chavez' return from the DL.
Jacoby Ellsbury, Boston Red Sox
Jacoby Ellsbury has been an integral cog in the Boston Red Sox machine for years. His .298 average, six home runs and 27 RBI have significantly helped the Red Sox regain their momentum after an 0-6 start.
However, Ellsbury hasn't been able to hit left-handers all year. He's hitting just .224 versus southpaws with no home runs and just two RBI. Ellsbury may be on the path to greatness in 2011, but he needs to step his game up against lefties if he wants to continue his success.
Carlos Gonzalez, Colorado Rockies
Carlos Gonzalez came within nine home runs and two RBI of the Triple Crown last season. Though he's gotten off to a slower start this year, Gonzalez is warming up and is once again a legitimate threat to win the prestigious award.
He can't seem to hit left-handers, however. So far in 2011, he's only hitting .224 with one home run and nine RBI. Gonzalez has to start hitting better against left-handers if he hopes to get back on track this year.
Torii Hunter, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
One of the all-time great outfielders in the majors, Torii Hunter is a Hall of Fame player. In 2011, though he's only hitting .249, he's knocked out eight and knocked in 24, and he's helping the Angels compete in the AL West.
There's one kink in Hunter's game this year—he's only hitting .217, doesn't have a homer and has only brought in five against southpaws. Whether or not you're one of the greats, those numbers don't stack up.
Jimmy Rollins, Philadelphia Phillies
Jimmy Rollins is helping a lacking offense in Philadelphia by hitting .265 with three homers and 18 RBI. Those numbers may not be great, but with an offense like that in Philadelphia, .265 isn't half bad.
What is bad, however, is his .230 average against lefties. He has one home run and just five RBI against lefties and has to step it up if he wants to help the Phillies to October.
Honorable Mention: Buster Posey, San Francisco Giants
As if Buster Posey didn't have enough problems, he was barely hitting over .200 against lefties before he went down with a season-ending leg injury. One home run, six RBI and a .205 average won't cut it against left-handers, and unfortunately for Posey, those numbers will stick for the rest of the year.
Andre Ethier, Los Angeles Dodgers
One of baseball's biggest threats at the plate this year has done nothing but fizzle against left-handers. Ethier is hitting just .200 against lefties so far in 2011 and has just six of his 26 RBI against left-handers.
Without Ethier's power bat, the Dodgers take a severe hit. If he can't get it going against lefties, Ethier and the Dodgers could find themselves watching the postseason from home.
Ryan Howard, Philadelphia Phillies
Ryan Howard has been one of the sources of the Phillies' lackluster offense, hitting only .252 though he has hit 12 home runs and brought in 42. Against lefties, however, Howard has been even more off, hitting a paltry .197 with nine RBI.
Ike Davis, New York Mets
The Mets haven't been all that great in 2011, and Ike Davis' performance against left-handers is one of the reasons why. He's hitting just .163 against southpaws. It doesn't matter who you are or who you play for—that's awful. No home runs and just four RBI don't exactly scream success.
Honorable Mention: James Loney, Los Angeles Dodgers
He's hitting .249 with three home runs and 18 RBI, but against lefties, he's next to helpless—he's hitting a horrible .188 with just two RBI. It's hard to believe a hitter with the talent of Loney can't seem to find a groove against lefties.
Dan Uggla, Atlanta Braves
Could there have been a more pointless trade during the 2010 offseason? Dan Uggla for Omar Infante (who also made the cut on this list) couldn't have worked out any worse for either team. Uggla is hitting just .178 on the year, and it's a surprise he has seven home runs and 16 RBI.
Against lefties, he's even worse. With an average of .115 (that's just six hits in 52 at-bats), no homers and just one RBI, Dan Uggla hasn't been cutting it at second in Atlanta.
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