Pablo Sandoval and Hanley Ramirez both signed major deals with the Red Sox this past summer and will look to use Fenway Park as an asset to their batting careers. Fenway is going to be more than just a historic ballpark for both of these players as they are coming over from teams where they are in pitcher-friendly parks. AT&T Park in San Francisco is the only park that Pablo Sandoval has ever known and Dodger Stadium is where Hanley Ramirez has played the last two seasons. According to an ESPN list of hitter friendly parks, AT&T Park and Dodger Stadium are ranked 25th and 27th respectively while Fenway Park is ranked 5th. This is an interesting scenario on which player is going to benefit at their new home more and not much of who is going to outperform the other.
Pablo Sandoval is a switch hitter, but the left side of the plate has been the better side for him. Throughout his career, Sandoval has hit .304 with 88 home runs as a lefty and has hit .270 with 18 home runs batting right handed. Last season, Sandoval batted .317 with 11 home runs batting left handed. The right side was significantly worse as he hit .199 with 5 home runs. With those numbers in mind, Sandoval is going to be challenging the deep dimensions of right field at Fenway. But according to Fangraphs, Sandoval can strike the ball anywhere on the field and there is a possibility that his luck from the right side of the plate could change with the legendary Green Monster in left field. Pablo Sandoval told the Boston Globe that one of many reasons why he decided to come to Boston was because of Fenway Park and strongly feels that he is going to really enjoy playing in the 103 year old ballpark.
While Sandoval just slaps the ball anywhere he pleases, Hanley Ramirez is your traditional pull hitter. According to Fangraphs, more than half of Ramirez’ were hit to left field and only one went to right field. Like many right handed hitters with a legitimate pop at Fenway Park, Ramirez will definitely have more than his share. The biggest challenge for Ramirez is that he has missed 110 total games in the last two seasons because of constant hamstring and back injuries. Now that Ramirez is shifting from shortstop to a less physically demanding position in left field, there is a greater chance that Ramirez will avoid long stints on the DL.
My verdict on the story is that I believe that Sandoval is going to have the edge, at least at this current moment. Sandoval can hit to all areas of the field and Fenway Park is going to be the exact park that Sandoval will see his numbers grow.