The Arizona Diamondbacks are sending Robbie Ray to the hill tonight to start against the slumping Texas Rangers, and in doing so, they're hoping they can strike while the iron is hot, so to say.
The iron being left-handed pitching, which has made the Rangers' lineup look silly recently as the team hit below .200 against lefties for the month of June and have continued the trend into July.
Ray is 0-3 with a 4.58 ERA in his last three games, but he could go out and throw a gem on Tuesday simply because he's a southpaw. The Rangers' lineup, of course, is loaded with left-handed bats and the only one really hitting lefties is Prince Fielder, who hits everything.
Rougned Odor, Shin-Soo Choo, Mitch Moreland and Josh Hamilton all struggle against lefties, as does Leonys Martin, who could be displaced from time to time by the newly returned Delino DeShields, who leads all Rangers right-handed hitters this season in OPS — that tells you something.
Jeff Banister is going to have start getting creative with his lineup as teams begin to throw lefties at the Rangers by design, and until they show they can hit lefties, it's going to keep happening.