What the Angels lineup should look like with Anthony Rendon suspended
Anthony Rendon has been suspended for five games for his incident with a fan in Oakland following the Los Angeles Angels' Opening Day loss. Rendon was asked about the incident prior to the second game of the series but did not give a comment. He's hitless in his first six at-bats of the season and is now going to embark on a five-game suspension.
Rendon has the ability to appeal, and hopefully get the suspension reduced to a lower number of games. If he doesn't appeal, the suspension begins tonight. The fact that Rendon is currently in the lineup tells me he likely will appeal, but nothing has been announced yet on that front.
LA Angels losing Anthony Rendon isn't as big of a blow as it once was
The Angels are too familiar with losing Anthony Rendon. He's missed substantial time in each of the last two seasons due to injury and even was suspended last season for his involvement in the Mariners brawl.
Rendon had a monster spring and was looking fully healthy at last, but this is just the latest set-back in what has been an awful contract.
Fortunately for the Angels, with Rendon out, the lineup is mostly fine. It's not as good as it would be with him in it, but it's been much worse. The Angels won't have to turn to the likes of Josh Rojas or Andrew Velazquez to fill in, they have established MLB hitters to start games. For now, I expect the lineup to look something like this.
1) Taylor Ward - LF
2) Mike Trout - CF
3) Shohei Ohtani - DH
4) Hunter Renfroe - RF
5) Brandon Drury - 2B
6) Jake Lamb - 1B
7) Luis Rengifo - 3B
8) Gio Urshela - SS
9) Logan O'Hoppe - C
Something like this is what I'd expect the Angels to roll out against right-handers. It's similar to the lineup they've been putting out, just Rendon hits in that cleanup spot with everyone else moved down.
If the Angels face a left-hander with Rendon on the sidelines, I expect David Fletcher to step in and play shortstop with Urshela moving from short to third, Rengifo moving from third to second, and Drury moving from second to first.
It's a lot of moving pieces, but this team is incredibly versatile and deep. The Angels obviously would have a hard time withstanding another lengthy Rendon injury, but five games (or hopefully fewer if he appeals), shouldn't cost them.