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Wednesday, January 19, 2022

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    Detroit Tigers down White Sox, take another series from division leader

    Detroit — Earlier in the season, manager AJ Hinch wouldn’t play his rookie outfielder Akil Baddoo against left-handed pitching — lefty vs. lefty with Baddoo, who hadn’t played in two years and not ever above High-A ball, was not in his or the team’s best interest at that point.

    Then, as Baddoo progressed through the season, Hinch started giving him a few starts against lefties, usually batting him at the bottom of the order on those days. When Baddoo was going good at the plate, he’d challenge him by giving him more work against lefties, though he still tried to protect him against the especially nasty ones.

    When he felt Baddoo was scuffling, as he has recently, he started him only against right-handers.

    But on Tuesday, Baddoo, who is hitting .235 started and batted leadoff against a seasoned lefty — White Sox Dallas Keuchel, who won a Cy Young Award when he played for Hinch in Houston. It is at least some measure of his development that Baddoo responded with two RBI singles in his first two at-bats.

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