Hanley Ramirez got an off day on Thursday in the series opener against the Philadelphia Phillies, despite being in a monstrous stretch of games the past week.
With the Dodgers on a six-game winning streak, eyes may fall on Yasiel Puig, but Hanley Ramirez has also been very productive of late.
In the six-game streak that Ramirez started, the Dodgers have 18 runs batted in, with six coming off Ramirez's bat. He has a nine-game hitting streak right now, during which Ramirez has 11 of the team’s 33 RBI, sporting a .485/.528/.909 line with four home runs.
The question getting tossed around on Monday is why would you sit such a hot bat?
“I dont want to do it, but I feel like I need to do it” considering he has played in nine games the last eight days after coming off a hamstring injury," manager Don Mattingly said. "When guys get tired, and are playing a lot, (hamstring injuries) tend to come back.”
Mattingly thinks Ramirez still has to hold back while running, and is afraid to have him run the bases. The actual status of Ramirez’s health has been questionable because he has been saying that he is 100 percent ready to go, but the coaching staff believes he has been putting himself at risk of straining his hamstring again.
Considering that Ramirez has been injured most of the season, but is fantastic when in the lineup, the day off was the right move to make. He is too valuable to this team offensively.
In 2013, Hanley has started just 16 games at shortstop, hitting 19-55 with four doubles, four home runs, and eleven RBI. Without Ramirez shortstop has been a black hole, Dee Gordon, Justin Sellers, Nick Punto, and Luis Cruz have combined to go 36-222, with two doubles, and three home runs.
On Monday, Nick Punto started at shortstop and went 1-2. Ramirez came in to pinch hit and was intentionally walked.
The lineups for the game on Friday have not been announced yet, but it will be interesting to see if Don Mattingly believes Ramirez is healthy enough to start against Philadelphia.