Looking to give Heyward a chance to rest, Gonzalez opted to do so when the Giants were starting left-hander Barry Zito. Other than the fact that the strong outfielder homered against another left-hander in Madison Bumgarner on Saturday, it seemed to be the best time to rest Heyward.
Heyward entered Tuesday night having batted .307 with 18 home runs and a .933 OPS in the 76 games he had played dating back to June 2.
In 165 at-bats against right-handed pitchers during this span, he has batted .358 with 14 home runs, a .422 on-base percentage and .703 slugging percentage. In 125 at-bats against left-handed pitchers, he has batted .240 with four home runs, a .294 on-base percentage and a .384 slugging percentage.
While Heyward certainly has some room to improve against left-handed pitching, he has already made some strides since the beginning of the season. In the 62 at-bats he compiled against southpaws through June 1, he batted .194 with two home runs, a .265 on-base percentage and a .323 slugging percentage.