There is alot of talk on boards, talkshows, and just conversations with friends on how to use Charlie Welch tomorrow.
To me, this is the biggest no brainer of all-time.
I know Welch is a devastating weapon as a pinch hitter. I know he became a full-on legend in his winning shot v. Nebraska.
But, I see no way in the world we can afford to allow him to have, say, one (maybe two) at bats, versus 4 or 5. Its just math.
Welch is hitting dang close to .400 at this point. He has homered in his last 3 games. He is RED HOT. Along with Moore, Smith, and to a lesser degree Battles and Opitz, the significant majority of our offense is coming from that 5 (let’s hope Slavin’s shot helps bring him out of his injury induced slump). We can’t afford to save Welch for the big moment. We need to score runs the entire game, or there might not be a big moment at the end.
Why? Because NC State can HIT. They try to outscore you. And today they did. They have a terrific offensive baseball team. Their weakness is pitching (even today, when they got GREAT pitching for them…we scored 5). Which means we need to position ourselves to exploit their weakness and match their offensive production.
Of course, we also have KOPPS. But let’s not put the whole thing on his shoulders. There is a real chance NC State could score runs early, before Kopps comes in. We need to be prepared to score early as well…more than 2 (and who was responsible for those two? Hmmmmm) so that Kopps doesn’t enter with a significant deficit.
Anyway…these are my thoughts at 3:15 am on a sleepless night as I worry about this game…
Play Welch at DH. If you are worried about defense, put Goodheart on the bench and let HIM pinch hit. Otherwise, let’s go with Goodheart in RT, Franklin in Center, and either Wallace or Gregory in left.
OK…back to attempting sleep