by: Parker Perry @ParkerPerry_
The Blog Red Machine posted an article Monday explaining that a Reds' outfielder has once again been put in a tough spot as the fourth outfielder in 2013.
It argued that Chris Heisey is on the baseball God's bad side, as he continues to be put on the back burner as a Cincinnati Red.
And though Heisey is definitely the fourth option in the upcoming year, he will surely see more playing time in 2013 than he has in any other year as a major leaguer--or at least he should.
When the Reds traded for Shin-Soo Choo, they made themselves a legitimate World Series contending team. Choo is everything the Reds need offensively. Some have said that Choo's skills are diminishing, but he is still the perfect bat to make the 2013 Reds a virtual irresistible force.
However, as good as Choo is against right handers (he posted a .327 average against them last year), he was horrid against left handed pitching.
If you thought Jay Bruce (.225 against left handers) was bad, then you have seen nothing yet.
Choo finished the year batting .199 against lefties. It is amazing how a player can do so well against one handedness and fail so miserably against the other.
This is to say that whenever the Reds have to face a south-paw this year, Heisey will be starting. Heisey batted .274 against left handers last season, and is the by far the best option to face a left hander off the current bench (that consists of himself, Jack Hannahan .167, Jason Donald .175 and Xavier Paul .000 who only had four at bats--and two strikeouts ).
He will see a lot of playing time this coming season. Even Ryan Ludwick had trouble facing lefties last season. He finished with .263, nearly 20 points lower than when he faced a righty.
Heisey's on-base percentage is much higher than the others as well.
Also he has a much better defensive glove than Choo, and maybe better than both Ludwick and Bruce. He will likely be a consistent defensive replacement for the Reds throughout next season.
Lastly, Heisey is the type of player that makes a team one of the best in baseball. The Reds lineup with Choo in it (facing a right hander) is great. But you need a player like him that contributes at every role he is put in. I expect him to have various roles as the season progress.
The article gives the details of his contract, and says that he is signed up to 2017. And it proves that Heisey is not hated by the baseball Gods, but instead is smiled upon. Ludwick will likely be on his way out the door after 2014. This gives Heisey a place in the outfielder for the remainder of his contract. It will likely be then that he will prove that he is either an everyday player who deserves to make the big bucks, or a fourth outfielder who deserves to make a living.
All in good time, all in good time.