March 25, 2020 at 8:52 am
Everyone in their life always has their what if’s. What if I took that job opportunity? What if I asked out my high school crush to prom? What if Hanley Ramirez didn’t fracture his rib in the 2013 NLCS. Ok maybe not that last one but I personally wonder, would a healthy Hanley had made a difference in the 2013 NLCS?
Hanley only played 86 games in 2013 with 20 home runs and 57 RBI’s but what he did in the regular season isn’t as impressive compared to his playoff statistics. In a four game series vs Atlanta, Hanley had a batting average of .500 going 8-16 with 6 RBI’s and a 1.063 slugging percentage. His six extra base hits in the NLDS tied a franchise record for the postseason. Hanley was seeing the ball well in October and he proved to be the most dangerous bat in the lineup.
In Game 1 of the 2013 NLCS, Joe Kelly drilled Hanley in his rib cage. Hanley immediately dropped his bat and yelled in pain. Hanley would stay in the game but would miss out on game two of the series. His replacement for game two was Nick Punto who didn’t have a single at bat in the NLDS. In the regular season he had a .255 batting average with only two home runs and 21 RBI’s. He went 1-3 in game two of the series with a single. As the series shifted towards Dodger Stadium, It would be announced that Hanley suffered a hairline fracture in his 8th rib on his left side.
Hanley continued to play but his performance suffered. In a crucial game four, Lance Lynn was o the mound for the Cardinals. In the NLDS, Lynn give up seven hits and 5 runs scored. He would finish the series with a 10.3 ERA. Lynn has obviously shown struggles with his command in the postseason, one can imagine the damage Hanley will do against a pitcher like him. In game four Hanley would go 0-3 with three strikeouts. Lynn didn’t have an impressive game going 5.1 IP giving up six hits, three walks, and giving up two runs. I firmly believe a healthy Hanley makes the difference in that game and ties up the series at 2. His performance did not improve throughout the series and he ended batting .133 with zero extra base hits and only one RBI. A very unfortunate end to such a promising postseason for Hanley Ramirez.
The only way the Cardinals were going to stop the red hot Hanley Ramirez was to make him sit on the bench. They weren’t able to keep him out of the game but having Hanley injured proved to hurt the Dodgers. They would go on to lose the series in 6 games at Busch Stadium. We can only imagine what would had been if Hanley was healthy in the NLCS.
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