FanPost

Hypocrisy R Us

Via twincities.com and BYTO:

Punto fits at No. 2: Ron Gardenhire believes Nick Punto is well-suited for the No. 2 spot in the Twins' batting order, .204 batting average or not.

Punto proved that Friday night, when he manufactured the winning run in the 10th inning.

"He's a good bunter, good speed - get him on base, that's a good scenario," the Minnesota manager said. "You've got doubles hitters coming up after him, and if a guy hits a double, you should score. If Punto or (Jason) Tyner is on, they will."

Gardenhire said has heard all the complaints about Punto, but "I have a lot of respect for a guy who goes through troubles like he's had offensively and still never carries it over (to defense)," he said. "It never affects him on the other side of the ball. He goes out there and plays defense, really plays it, and saves us all kinds of runs."

Gardenhire used Tyner as his leadoff hitter on Saturday because left-handers hit .328 against Texas starter Kameron Loe. And he preferred Punto over Alexi Casilla, who batted ninth, because of his experience. Besides, Punto is a .261 career hitter in the second slot, better than any other spot in the order.

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Okay, couple things here. First, apparently Gardenhire needs to start watching some Twins games like the rest of us. Everyone knows Punto hasn't been able to bunt at all this year, and Gardenhire himself said as much after that bunt third strike debacle a few days ago. But a single, error, and wild pitch later, and here we are, back to the completely irrational support of the worst regular MLB batter hitting second in the lineup. Does Gardenhire have amnesia or something?

Second, Gardy cites the fact that Punto doesn't let his terrible offense affect his defense. Well that's just super. Unfortunately, this has nothing to do with his abilities to hit at the top of a major league lineup. Psst, Ron, you can actually bat the position players in any order you want. Little Nicky's defense won't be diminished by batting him ninth. Just an FYI.

Finally, being a terrible hitter with experience does not make him a better option than a decent hitter without experience. They don't hand out extra runs at the end of the game based on how many cumulative games your lineup has played.

And, of course, I had to do a photoshop for this tremendous outburst of baseball savvy by Gardy:

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