First off let me start this by saying this is not a fire Lou (though lately I am questioning what he is thinking) nor a trade Aramis Ramirez post (Probably because no team would take him). But ladies and gentlemen, we are 10 days away from June and our 3rd baseman that has been nothing but productive for quite a few years is still struggling to get to the Mendozaline (.200 BA). This will not cut for a player slotted fifth in the order. What is even more frightening is Aramis has 36 strikeouts through May 20th, 7 less than he had in his injury shortened season. He is striking out 21% of the time (plate appearances), which definitely won't cut it.
"I am my own hitting coach." Well Rami, maybe you should fire yourself and work harder with Jaramillo, Exhibit A - Alfonso Soriano.
Aside from the obvious terrible numbers, and as stated our Cubbie's fifth hitter has an OPS of .510 (good for 94 overall, just behind Ronny Cedeno, Jerry Hairston Jr., and Carlos Lee). Aramis is hitting .192 with Runners in scoring position in May thus far(Started calculating since the Arizona series which started April 29th) and is hitting .179 overall this month. While it is apparent Derrek Lee isn't hitting the snot out of the baseball either, but Lee is a gold glove winning first baseman and I think Lee is by far more valuable in the clubhouse than Ramirez. That and his WAR(Wins above replacement) is slightly higher at .4(which is computed to a reserves number, ouch) compared to Ramirez's -1.2(which is considered less than a replacement, slight wretch). That is BAD. I am not touching Lee in this topic because of the season he had last year.
So where do they go from here without moving anyone as it is too early in the season to do so? They need to move Aramis down in the order, you can't just bench a player that has the numbers Rami has the last couple of seasons. If(more likely when, not if) he comes around, he is one of the elite hitting 3rd basemen in baseball. For now though, as the Cubs have struggled getting runs on the board, they need to shuffle the batting order quite a bit.
Why not shift Ramirez to 6th and move Alf up to the 5th spot. I understand Soriano can be a bit streaky and his history of poor Batting average with runners in scoring position. (.216 in 09, .276 in 08, .248 in 07) BUT Soriano'snumbers this month advocate he is hot with runners on, through in a limited about of chances(14 ABs) but is hitting .428 with RISP since the Arizona series, compared to Aram at .192. At least do this until Ramirez shows signs of life (that walk off blast against Colorado was a nice start until since then he has gone 0 for 8 with 3 Ks, guess they are right when they say shome runs don't get you out of slumps).
A short, quick fix for a little while could help the team gets runs across the plate and ease Ramirez back into his normal groove with less pressure. Just a temporary fix.