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Ian Happ Should Not Be in the Top of the Lineup

By Jordan Dupont
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Ian Happ has been hitting out of the three spot in the lineup all year long.  Add this to the list of questionable lineup decisions David Ross has made throughout this season.

Sure, on the surface, Happ has 14 home runs, he’s had some clutch moments this year, and he earned his contract extension before the season started.  However, he’s currently hitting for a .240 average and a .767 OPS.  

While these numbers may not seem horrendous on the surface, there are certainly people swinging the bat better who are currently situated at the bottom of the order.  Take Jeimer Candelario, for example.  He usually hits out of the seven spot, but since being traded to the Cubs, is hitting for a .339 average and a .926 OPS.  “Jordan,” you may ask, “isn’t that a small sample size?”  You would have a valid argument.  Jeimer has only been on the team for 29 games.  Even then, his season numbers are a .269 average and .837 OPS.  Additionally, Candelario’s OPS+ is sitting a whopping 24 points higher than Happ’s, at 130 and 106 respectively.  

I’m certainly not asking for Happ to be taken out of the lineup.  He is a plus defender who can contribute on offense.  His bat just does not belong at the top of the lineup.  I think a swap of his spot and Jeimer’s could lead some strong results heading into the final playoff push that gets closer every day.