|Delmon Young will be in the Tiger lineup for the World Series even when the DH spot isn't an option. (AP)|
Tigers manager Jim Leyland has already made his first big lineup decision of the World Series. Reigning ALCS MVP Delmon Young, who's Detroit's primary DH, will play left field during Games 1 and 2 and, if necessary, 6 and 7, which will all be played under National League rules. MLB.com's Jason Beck tweeted the news on Saturday.
I suppose Leyland doesn't have much of a choice, as it would be difficult for him to bench the hitter who did most of the heavy lifting in the Tigers' sweep of the Yanks. But this move could hurt Detroit. Young, of course, is a miserable fielder. Should the Cardinals advance (they presently lead the Giants three games to two in the NLCS), then he'll be facing a full diet of right-handed starters.
On that point, it's worth noting Young batted just .247/.279/.370 against right-handed pitching during the regular season. That's simply not an acceptable level of production for a player who's a net negative on defense.
Again, I get why Leyland made the decision, but Young didn't suddenly become a useful hitter in the ALCS.