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Dodgers' Don Mattingly again sits Andre Ethier, Carl Crawford

April 12, 2014|By Steve Dilbeck
  • Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier, left, celebrates with teammate Carl Crawford after hitting a three-run home run against the Oakland Athletics in spring training on March 10. Both players did not start in Saturday's game against the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier, left, celebrates with teammate Carl… (Christian Petersen / Getty…)

Anybody starting to wonder whether Dodgers Manager Don Mattingly just doesn’t want to pick between Andre Ethier and Carl Crawford when facing a left-hander?

There is that benefit, but Mattingly has good reason for sitting both as he is doing again Saturday against Arizona Diamondbacks left-hander Wade Miley.

For the second time in a week since he’s had all of his outfielders available, Mattingly elected to sit both left-handed hitters Ethier and Crawford, starting Matt Kemp, Yasiel Puig and Scott Van Slyke. He also sat second baseman Dee Gordon, who only leads the team with a .405 batting average, in favor of right-hander Justin Turner.

Mattingly’s using the same type of lineup he did April 5 against San Francisco Giants left-hander Madison Bumgarner, a game the Dodgers lost, 7-2. The only left-handed hitter in the lineup is Adrian Gonzalez (.278 lifetime vs. left-handed pitchers).

The Dodgers are batting just .191 against left-handers this season, 12th in the National League, and Ethier (.221) and Crawford (.206) struggled against them last season. The Dodgers hit .253 against left-handers in 2013.

So for now, this is the way Mattingly is going. It gives him a pair of powerful pinch-hitters should the Diamondbacks at some point go to a right-handed reliever. It certainly seems worth a try.

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