Joe Girardi's first managerial decision of the season was a doozie, choosing to have CC Sabathia walk Sean Rodriguez, a career .229 hitter with 22 lifetime home runs, in order to pitch to Carlos Pena, who has averaged more than 22 home runs a year for 11 seasons and has seven career grand slams.
This was not just a purely reflexive lefty-righty move; Rodriguez is a career .286 hitter off Sabathia (6-for-21) and Pena had just four hits in 35 ABs vs. CC, although two of them were home runs.
Well, now he has three. In his first at-bat for the Rays, Pena launched a 3-2 pitch into the right-centerfield bleachers for a grand slam, giving the Rays a 4-0 first inning lead.
Girardi had the numbers on his side, but you didn't need numbers to tell you what should have been obvious to anyone wo follows baseball, that Pena is a dangerous hitter and Rodriguez is not. should make for some interesting post-game repartee.