Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 5/30/12
The Cleveland Indians' inability to hit left-handed pitching was an issue again Tuesday as they lost 8-2 to the Kansas City Royals. Cleveland scored two runs on two hits in the first inning, then was held scoreless on three hits for the rest of the game. Kansas City rookie left-hander Will Smith was making just his second major league start, and he baffled Indians hitters for six innings, holding them to two runs on four hits. With the loss, the Indians' record vs. left-handed starters is now 4-10. They are 23-12 vs. right-handed starters. Going into the season, Indians officials acknowledged that their heavily left-handed-hitting lineup could be vulnerable to left-handed pitching. However, the brass was willing to take its chances on the theory that about 70 percent of the pitchers in the majors are right-handers. That may be, but the way things are going, the Indians may see every one of the left-handers in the majors. They have lost to left-handed starters with lots of experience and ones with hardly any experience at all. Opposing teams, later in games, are also quick to bring in left-handed relievers who can pitch to multiple batters, because in most games, the Indians have multiple left-handers hitting consecutively in their lineup. Counting their loss Tuesday, the Indians are now hitting .210 as a team against left-handed pitchers. Assuming Cleveland remains in contention, one of its priorities as the trade deadline approaches would seem to be to acquiring a right-handed bat to try to bring better balance to the lineup.
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