Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A recipe for success

Clearly, the Cubs' current lineup is not getting the job done. Hendry shook things up a bit on Sunday by firing hitting coach Gerald Perry and replacing him with Triple-A hitting coach Von Joshua (Joshua was the White Sox hitting coach from 1998-2001). I can't recall offhand a team firing their hitting coach and then suddenly scoring runs in bunches, but I suppose shaking things up is worth a try. It's certainly not fair to lay all the Cubs' woes at Perry's feet; after all, he was the hitting coach last year when the Cubs consistently worked good at-bats and tore the cover off the ball. But perhaps a new personality and some fresh perspective will give the bats a lift.

What else can the Cubs do to help right the ship? Here are a few thoughts:

Get Miles out of the lineup. Why is he starting every day? He's batting .202 and slugging a pathetic .254. Bobby Scales, who was inexplicably sent down when Harden came off the DL, was hitting just .241 but was slugging .466. He's also a better defensive second baseman. The Cubs could have sent Waddell down or gotten rid of the useless (and seldom used) David Patton instead. Even Andres Blanco would be an improvement over Miles.

Start Reed Johnson, even against righties. I'm not saying Kosuke should never play again, but let's give Johnson a chance. Fukudome has done absolutely nothing at the plate in the last few weeks, and Johnson (.272/.333/.437) deserves a chance to prove himself after a great season in '08.

Bring up Jake Fox. Fox will come up and DH when the Cubs head to Detroit on June 23. If he continues to rake, give him a shot at starting every now and then and let's see how bad is defense really is. He may be able to make up for his glove with his bat.

Move Soriano down in the order. If Soriano's going to strikeout no matter where he bats, then I suppose it doesn't matter all that much. But you simply cannot have a player with a .300 OBP (.268 in June) at the top of the order.

Start Hoffpauir occasionally. I hate to compliment Tony La Russa, but I believe part of the reason the Cardinals get so much out of so little year after year is because every player knows he needs to prove himself in order to stay in the lineup. Start Hoffpauir in left and/or right field every now and then. If he produces, give him more playing time. If not, you may see the residual effect of Bradley and/or Soriano stepping up their game to prove themselves.

Well, there are my two cents. What do you think the Cubs need to do to turn their offensive fortunes around?

**UPDATE**They're listening to me! Okay, maybe not, but the Cubs recalled Jake Fox Tuesday and placed Jason Waddell on the DL.

1 comment:

  1. What's Lou's fax number? Or e-mail? Or Twitter??