Why Is Everyone So Worried About Willingham In Right Field?
I gotta say, I'm a little taken aback by how much ink and breath I'm seeing wasted about why Josh Willingham shouldn't be playing right field. The primary argument seems to be: he hasn't played there much, so he probably shouldn't.
C'mon. There are a couple of differences, to be sure. But tell me which of these are dealbreakers?
- Right fielders generally need stronger arms, because they need to make a further throw to third base.
- The ball curves toward the line a bit more, because it does so when being hit by right-handers. Left-fielders see the same thing when a left-handed batter hits the ball, but there are fewer left-handed hitters.
- The size of the field can vary a lot depending on the park. In Target Field, left field is much larger.
- Obviously, in Target Field, the ball can come off the wall in right field in tormenting ways.
- There are more balls hit to left field.
Unless Willingham has a crappy arm, which is highly doubtful considering he used to play catcher with the Marlins, there is no reason for him to be in left field. Even if he does, it can't be worse than Revere's.
1. If he's out there w Revere and Span, he has nowhere near their range and should be in right field. Even for those who think Revere should play center (I don't, so long as Span is healthy), why the hell would you want Willingham in left field over Span?
2. If he's out there w Plouffe, I guess it's debatable, since we don't know exactly how good Plouffe will be. If Plouffe is really bad, then sure, move Willingham back, especially because Plouffe should have a decent arm. I expect Plouffe to be pretty decent out there.
3. If Span is out, then Revere is in center, which is just like #2.
If Willingham is Ok with this, and he sounds like he is, why screw around with it?