ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Guess what happens when you get two RBI hits in your big league debut, then tie a game with another in your first career pinch hitting appearance?
If you’re Roger Kieschnick, you get bumped up to fifth in the lineup -- smack in the middle of Buster Posey and Hunter Pence.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy said he moved Kieschnick up in the lineup in part to break up his left-handed bats, which was particularly important because Tampa Bay Rays right-hander Chris Archer has been perhaps baseball’s best pitcher over the past two weeks.
Archer is 4-0 with a 0.29 ERA over his last four starts. He’s thrown a pair of shutouts in that span, and he’s coming off a two-hitter at Yankee Stadium.
Bochy’s other daily dilemma continues to be choosing a first baseman between Brett Pill and Brandon Belt.
Belt is back in there, partly because Archer has been tough on right-handers, and partly because Pill would start Saturday against left-hander David Price.
But Pill started all three games at Philadelphia –- a series that included a right-handed opposing starter. So other than playing matchups, what’s Bochy plan to split time between the two?
“Good question, and I really don’t (have one),” the manager said. “We’re here to win some games and try to get the matchups we want. This guy (Archer) is on a roll and he’s been tough against right-handers.”
It’s a perform-for-play situation, pretty much. How Belt and Pill produce in the first two games of this series likely will determine who gets the start Sunday against right-hander Roberto Hernandez.
The Belt/Pill debate is drawing battle lines among Giants fans like few debates I’ve seen over the years covering this team. So you tell me … should the Giants platoon them, or stick with one, and why? The comments section is all yours. I look forward to reading your thoughts.