Left Field, Left-Handed Hitter
Normally the eighth spot in the order is given to the team’s worst hitter, contrary to popular belief that the nine spot is the worst in the lineup. The nine hole is what turns the lineup over to the top, so momentum can be key there. As for the eighth spot, not so much.
I wouldn’t go as far to say that Josh Naylor is the worst hitter in the lineup for the Indians, he just hasn’t found his stride since arriving at the deadline, still searching for his first home run with the Tribe.
Even so, when it comes to statistics, Naylor is technically the worst hitter in the lineup of those that are common starters. Going into Saturday’s contest, Naylor was slashing just .167/.194/.167 since arriving in Cleveland. His stats from San Diego are much better, but until they return to that level, this is where Naylor belongs in the lineup, if he belongs at all.
Naylor could be a candidate to be replaced in the lineup if one of the other outfielders begins to catch on, like Oscar Mercado has started to since returning from the alternate site.
If that becomes the case, then Mercado could make sense in the sixth spot with Naquin and Perez bumping down one spot each, maintaining a right-left-right alternation from the six, seven and eight spots.