Pre-Gamer: Scutaro New Leadoff Hitter

By Melissa Felkins

The San Francisco Giants return home and have a brand new leadoff hitter in today’s lineup against the Milwaukee Brewers. The new role (at least for tonight) belongs to Marco Scutaro, who has a good on-base-percentage (OBP) and has spent a fair amount of his career batting in that spot. His OBP this season is .369, behind only Buster Posey. He’s also 3rd on the team in walks, also behind Posey and Brandon Belt. It’s also important to know that he’s hitting .310 this season, tied with Posey for team leader. He’s a natural to fill the role. Bochy was also apparently considering Hunter Pence, likely for his speed and his ability to steal bases.

After yesterday’s loss in Tampa the news broke that Bruce Bochy wasn’t happy with the production of Gregor Blanco and Andres Torres in the leadoff spot and intended to change it up. Brandon Crawford will move up to bat 2nd and Hunter Pence is in the 3-hole. Blanco is batting 8th tonight.

Jul 23, 2013; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco Giants second baseman Marco Scutaro (19) at bat during the first inning in the first game of a doubleheader against the Cincinnati Reds at AT&T Park.

Andrew Baggarly of CSN Bay Area reported yesterday:

"“We have to change this up,” Bochy said. “We’re not getting production. They’re having a tough time. … It’s time to change things. We can’t get them on base.”"

This will be the first time the Giants have faced the Brewers since the Ryan Braun suspension. The Brewers swept the Giants in Milwaukee when the two teams met in April.

Chad Gaudin (5-2, 2.64 ERA) will be pitching against Tyler Thornburg (1-0, 2.22 ERA) this evening.

Giants Lineup

Scutaro 2B
Crawford SS
Pence RF
Posey C
Sandoval 3B
Belt 1B
Kieschnick LF
Blanco CF
Gaudin RHP

Brewers Lineup
Aoki RF
Segura SS
Lucroy C
Gomez CF
Gindl LF
Francisco 1B
Bianchi 3B
Gennett 2B

Aug 5, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; New York Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez speaks at a press conference before the game against the Chicago White Sox at US Cellular Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Also, in case you’ve been under a rock today, Alex Rodriguez was suspended for 211 games for violating MLB’s ban against PEDs. He will appeal and will be able to play until that appeal is heard, which likely won’t be until the offseason. He’s batting cleanup for the Yankees tonight in Chicago.