JUPITER, Fla. -- Throughout Spring Training, manager Don Mattingly has tinkered with various batting orders. Giancarlo Stanton has been a staple in the cleanup spot, and that will continue in the regular season.But who bats behind Stanton in the fifth spot has either been Justin Bour against right-handed starters or
JUPITER, Fla. -- Throughout Spring Training, manager Don Mattingly has tinkered with various batting orders. Giancarlo Stanton has been a staple in the cleanup spot, and that will continue in the regular season.
But who bats behind Stanton in the fifth spot has either been Justin Bour against right-handed starters or Martin Prado with a lefty on the mound. That slot may end up getting more stability.
Mattingly suggested on Wednesday that he may wind up making Prado a fixture behind Stanton.
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"I'm not sure if Martin shouldn't be the guy all the time," Mattingly said. "We'll see."
Bour is a bigger home run threat, but the organization has yet to decide whether it will use a platoon at first base.
The left-handed-hitting Bour had a slash line of .221/.293/.279 with nine RBIs in 75 plate appearances against southpaws in 2015. Against right-handed pitching, Bour was .270/.326/.519 with 23 homers and 64 RBIs.
Bour has had his chances against lefties in Spring Training, going 2-for-16 (.125) with an RBI, a walk and three strikeouts.
When the games count, if Bour is hitting fifth, opposing teams may force his hand by pitching around Stanton and then putting in a lefty. If Prado is behind Stanton, he has a proven track record as a situational hitter.
"We still haven't made a decision on J.B. every day, or getting whoever in there from the right-hand side," Mattingly said.
Chris Johnson is the likely platoon option at first base for Bour.
When Bour is facing right-handers, he may be lifted for a pinch-runner later in games. Utility infielder Miguel Rojas is an option to run for Bour and remain in the game at first base.
Prado, a steady performer, had a slash line of .318/.369/.436 with runners on base last year.
"Prado's job isn't to worry about the Big Man," hitting coach Barry Bonds said. "His job is to do his own job. Everyone has to do their own job. You can't worry about what Stanton's going to do, what [Dee] Gordon is going to do. Your role is to get on base, hit the ball and let the next man do his job. Everybody's role is, 'You got to focus on yourself that will light everyone else up.'"
Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.