Tampa Bay Rays manager Joe Maddon went mostly right-handed in his lineup tonight, but did opt for lefty Dan Johnson at designated hitter over Willy Aybar. Kelly Shoppach will be the catcher.
Maddon had said on Monday that he likely would go back to his righthanders, such as Shoppach and second baseman Sean Rodriguez, but hadn't decided on the DH.
Part of that was Johnson's ability to work tough at-bats even against lefty pitchers, such as Texas' Cliff Lee. And also that Maddon likes the flexibility of having the switch-hitting Aybar on the bench for a pinch-hit opportunity.
In Game 1, the Rays used Rocco Baldelli, but he is no longer on the active roster.
Here are some of the relevant stats:
— Shoppach in the series: 0-for-6 with 3 Ks
— Shoppach vs. lefties during season: .261 avg., .369 on-base percentage
— Jaso vs. lefites during season: .191, .333 OBP
— Shoppach vs. Lee, career: 0-for-6, 3 Ks
— Johnson vs. lefties during season: .235, .391 OBP
— Aybar vs. lefties during season: .246, .305 OBP
— Johnson vs. Lee, career: 1-for-6
— Aybar vs. Lee, career: 4-for-12
The Rangers made one change in their lineup from Game 1, starting Mitch Moreland at first instead of Jorge Cantu.