I don’t mind not pinch hitting for Kepler against Hand.
But down one run in the 9th with a speedster on second with no one out is an automatic bunt situation. The only way it isn’t is if your batter is Mike Trout because he would get IBB anyway. If the opponent is pitching to your hitter, your hitter needs to bunt. If Kepler isn’t good at bunting, pinch hit someone who is. Adrianza is probably the best of the bench players. Castro didn’t start that game. He’s probably a good bunter. Berrios maybe or maybe some other pitcher with bunting experience. Not sure who that would be on this staff.
Bottom line: Buxton needs to be on third base when that PA is over.
I'm not sure that's true. If you believe in Run Expectancy (which you may not), there's a lower probability of scoring from 3rd with 1 out than there is from 2nd with 0 outs. In fact, one could make a claim that an outfield single with Buxton on 2nd scores him easily. Similar to having a Trout at abat, you have an elite baserunner on 2nd.