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An Interesting Bit of Strategy in Last Night's Game

This picture wasn't available last night, I love it. Stay fair. (Photo by Brad White/Getty Images)
This picture wasn't available last night, I love it. Stay fair. (Photo by Brad White/Getty Images)
Getty Images

I wanted to go back and talk about a moment in last night's game, I touched on it in the recap, but it was interesting and I wanted to open it to discussion.

In the bottom of the 8th inning, with the score tied, one out, nobody on, John Farrell pinch hit for Adam Loewen, who was playing RF with JP Arencibia. We didn't score in the inning

Now the normal move would have been to put Dewayne Wise into the game to play right, either in Loewen/Arencibia's spot in the order or let JP stay in and catch and put Wise in Molina's spot. Instead Farrell decided to move his DH, Jose Bautista to right and put his pitcher into Loewen's spot in the batting order. 

Now in the game thread we were worried this meant it was possible that a pitcher would have to bat in an important moment in the game, but this being September, Farrell still had 4 batters on the bench, so he had someone to hit for the pitcher for the next 4 times through the order, if the game went that long. Since that would have meant extra inning and odds are, if the game went that long, there wouldn't have been much scoring in extras, he would have had batters for,  8 or so innings. If the game went 17 innings or more, then he might have to deal with the problem of a pitcher batting. Not many games go that long.

What did he gain by doing it this way? Well, instead of Wise batting next time that spot came around in the order, he could choose the pinch hitter he wanted to use. He could match up. Not that he had great bats on the bench, but the only time that spot came up, he had Mark Teahen (a lefty batter, if batter is the right term for Teahen) against the right handed pitcher. I'd rather he have used Cooper but that's me.

So, the good part about the way Farrell choose to play it was that he got to match up against what ever pitcher was in the game and that was worth more to Farrell than the slight chance that he might have to let a pitcher bat. I like the move, it shows that Farrell was thinking ahead.