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The Lineup

by Josh Ramsey

Sunday, 04/25/2010

Let us discuss one of my favorite subjects…the batting lineup. Everybody has an opinion…a stance…and did I say it already…an opinion. But, there is something that frustrates me about lineups…the individuals who try to over think them (like umm…Dusty Baker). Now let us discuss the Cincinnati lineup.

We’ll start with Leadoff. I’m going to throw some stats at you and you decide which one looks like a decent option at leadoff:

Option “A” has a career .245 BA, .313 OBP, and .399 SLUG Option “B” has a career .280 BA, .373 OBP, and .428 SLUG

Mmm Hmm…yep…me too. If you chose option “A” then you and Dusty are in a class of your own.

Drew Stubbs (option A) put up similar numbers to his ML career stats listed above while in the minors…just increase the BA by about twenty points. Chris Dickerson (option B) also put up very similar numbers to his ML career stats listed above while in the minors. Common sense tells us to put Dickerson in the leadoff spot and I am a very big believer in common sense. I am a huge fan of both of these young talents…but, everybody has their spot in the order and all I am asking is that we just get it right. You’ve heard me say it before…Facts are Facts and Stats are Stats and they don’t lie.

Let’s move on to the cleanup spot. Brandon Phillips is a great player…fun to watch…opinionated yet reserved. When the question is brought up regarding hitting in the fourth spot he side steps around it…”I do what Dusty tells me” he says; with that look on his face that is telling you he doesn’t agree with the choice. Are there not better options? Could we get better production out of Phillips if he were placed in another spot in the order…a spot that is more suited to his hitting style and abilities? Mark my words…if and when Phillips is ever moved to a more suited spot in the lineup we will see more production from him…mark my words. Don’t forget that his most productive season (his 30/30 season in 2007) came with him NOT in the number four spot in the lineup.

Last but not least is the notion that we always need to mix up our Lefties and Righties in the lineup…why do we have to over think this…why do we have to make this more important than it really is? So, here it is…my lineup:

Vs Righties:

LF Dickerson, SS Cabrera, 1B Votto, 3B Rolen, RF Bruce, 2B Phillips, CF Stubbs, C, P

Vs Lefties:

SS Cabrera, 2B Phillips, 1B Votto, 3B Rolen, LF Gomes, RF Bruce, CF Stubbs, C, P

It’s not a full proof solution…it still has its holes. However though, it put’s players where we would see the most individual production from them...do not forget that it takes the individual production of 9 people to equate to team production. I guarantee you that we would get more production all the way around. Unfortunately, we will probably never know for sure though. So much talent being wasted.

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