Showalter riding the hot hand, starts Ryan Flaherty again

Not a whole lot to come out of Buck Showalter’s pregame conference today – typical for a day game after a night game – but there was this one nugget.

Ryan Flaherty is getting his third straight start at second base today, even with Omar Quintanilla now in the fold.

Quintanilla came in Saturday’s game as a defensive replacement for Flaherty on Saturday, his first game action since July 8 with the New York Mets. Quintanilla hasn’t started a game since June 23.

So Showalter said he wanted to ease Quintanilla back. And he’ll probably start in the infield on Monday – maybe at second, maybe as a fill-in at short to give J.J. Hardy a rest.

But Flaherty’s presence in the lineup also has a lot to do with Flaherty, who has homered in his previous two games. He wants to give the Rule 5 rookie more consistent at-bats whenever possible.

“I talked to him a few days ago about not getting timid, about letting it rip and getting after it.  We talked about some of the tendencies [other teams] have shown and they are using on him, just to be aware of it,” Showalter said. “I’m trying to give Q a couple days to kind of get grounded. I plan on playing him [Monday] somewhere. So we will see. But it gives us a lot of versatility having both of those guys. Ryan has had a couple good two or three days.”

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