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Return of Ryan Ludwick Key to Reds Offense?

After yesterday’s game, the Cincinnati Reds activated left fielder Ryan Ludwick from the disabled list. For some in Redsland, it’s not a moment too soon. They may even be a few that believe that it could believe that it is a moment too late. Either way you look at it, it could produce a positive in relation to the Reds offense.

I know, the Reds overall offensive numbers look pretty darn good, but there are areas in which the bats haven’t been successful in this 2013 season. In scanning a few statistics, the 2012 Ludwick can help this team.

One area where I see the most complaints targeted is that of runners in scoring position (RISP). Heading into yesterday’s game, the Reds as a team owned a triple slash of .249/.354/.383 in these situations. In Ludwick’s first and only season as a Red, he was .296/.396/.502 in 150 plate appearances. Plus.

Another area: Reds RHB against RHP. This has been more of a hot button topic over the last week and with good reasons. Reds righty bats are .222/.278/.337 when facing righty arms. In 2012, Ludwick was .280/.340/.513 in 336 PA. This would be a definite upgrade.

The number of players that have manned left field this season have a combined 3-slash of .244/.313/.378. When Ludwick was in a game as a left fielder last season, it was .271/.345/.519. Plus.

Granted, the Ryan Ludwick of 2013 might be a different Ludwick from 2012. We might not see the power numbers that we witnessed last season due to potential limitations from the shoulder injury. His rehab assignment didn’t exactly produce glaring numbers. Just the opposite: .136/.208/.227 in 48 PA in games with Dayton and Louisville. He hit one home run and drove in only 4 runners and 11 of those PA ended in a whiff.

I honestly don’t expect Ludwick to walk into the batter’s box and dominate. No one should as Staff Writer Stepahnie Deskins noted the other day. That would be a tall ask for a guy that has essentially missed the entire season to date. Add that Ludwick’s timing takes a little longer to achieve as compared to other hitters, it could honestly take him a couple of weeks to fine tune his stroke. That said, his presence could create a wave of excitement and spark the other bats.

What will be interesting is to see how Dusty constructs his lineup. We had heard that upon his return, Ludwick will not be placed in the cleanup spot. The general consensus is that he will be slotted in the 6-hole. Would be like…

Choo
Frazier (provided that stays as is)
Votto
BP
Bruce
Ludwick
Cozart
Hanigan/Mes
Pitcher

What say you on that lineup?

With Ludwick already activated, the Reds sent Derrick Robinson to Louisville.

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Tags: Cincinnati Reds Ryan Ludwick

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