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Ramirez back to leadoff

If you watched last night's game, you probably figured this out.

Ramirez knew exactly why Gonzalez summoned him: to inform him he was back in the leadoff spot.

Gonzalez had a change of heart with the batting order, deciding to move Ramirez out of the three-hole in favor Cabrera and slotting the left-handed hitting Mike Jacobs between Cabrera and Josh Willingham.

This alignment should look familiar, as it was the one the Marlins used for most of April and May until Jacobs was sidelined with a fractured thumb. Initially, Gonzalez had said Ramirez would remain the No. 3 hitter in spite of Jacobs' return from the disable list.

"It's the new old lineup," Gonzalez said. "I kicked it around and looked at it. I'm allowed to change my mind."

Ramirez was fine with the move.

Hanley did well in the three hole.  His plate appearances are about the same in both lineup positions.  When batting third, as opposed to first, he had one less hit (49-50), but hit one more home run (6-5), with ten more RBI in the third slot (18-8), and a couple of fewer strikeouts (24-26).  His batting average did drop while batting third (.297-.345), along with his slugging percentage (.331-.424) but he did score runs at about the same clip (29-34).

Ramirez can bat third and do it successfully, so the experiment wasn't even close to being a failure.  At this point in his career, he is more at ease being a leadoff hitter.

But Hanley eventually needs to become comfortable batting down in the order, because that his destiny and his days at leadoff are numbered.  In fact, he probably won't remain there for the rest of the season.  When Cody comes back, the lineup will change.  Also there is this one other stat:

The Marlins are 14-21 when Ramirez leads off and 21-18 when he bats third.

Enjoy it while it last, Hanley -- 'cause it probably won't last long.