What is your opinion of the A.J. Pierzynski signing?
MJH on accountability
Oh yea, Neftali blew another one. I'm not trying to rile anyone up but I have a few things that have concerned me lately. 1 is the lineup. I dont have any hard data to back this up but I really think we could put a better lineup out there to optimize run production. I would like to see MY slide up to 2nd, Nap at 4 (while Beltre is still out) and move Elvis down to 8 or 9. Mikey Baseball has been awesome this year but he still doesn't strike me as a cleanup guy but more of a perfect 2-hole hitter...he hits the ball the other way, makes contact, has some pop, gets on base, etc. And Nap has been white hot now that hes getting everyday PT.
My other beef is late game defensive alignments. 9th inning with a 1 run lead, why is Murphy still in LF when there are better defensive options? I don't know if Chavez could have gotten to the ball Cruz gloved (but couldn't secure) or not but I know Murphy, Hamilton, Cruz is not the best defensive outfield alignment we can put out there. I will never be a Wash basher but I really wish he could rely a little more on reason and less on the gut sometimes. With such a smart, forward thinking FO I am surprised no one has tried to talk to Wash about optimal linups, checking the splits, etc. (maybe they have tried).
Anyways...I'm not hair on fire mad about anything, just see some things that I think could help this team perform better. Then again, I am not paid a lot of money for my baseball smarts, so it's quite possible that the previous paragraphs are borderline retarded. I like turtles.
I agree with both your points. I posted several months ago that Elvis should move to 9 and MY to 2. It makes complete sense with Beltre in the lineup. Without Beltre, the only question is whether Napoli or Cruz can handle the pressure of clean up. But I don't see the harm in trying it. MY is better suited at 2 than 4 or 5.
You're absolutely right about defensive substitutions. Gentry or Chavez should be playing defense in the last inning of every game. It should be standard.
I agree on both points also.
I have not understood the Beltre-missing lineup. We have one very proven power hitter (Cruz) and another guy who has power streaks (Napoli)....yet MY is batting cleanup?
Some conventional theory suggests the 2nd hitter should be fast and a good bunter, as those are skills to utilize if the leadoff hitter gets on base. If that's the only criteria for determining your 2nd hitter (not that I'm saying it is; it isn't), Elvis is probably the best man for the job.
I'll play devil's advocate for a minute: what's your argument for putting MY 2nd?
I would be fine with Cruz batting cleanup vs righties and Napoli vs lefties. Either is a more powerful cleanup option than Mikey, and the idea of the cleanup hitter is to maximize the potential damage with runners on base. Sure MYs batting average increases the odds that we score 1 run with runners on but I think (again no data to back this up, though I am guessing such data exists) Napoli/Cruz increases the odds of scoring multiple runs.
Andy, I agree with your point about speed but my reason for MY over Elvis at 2 is Mikey's .371 OBP vs Elvis's .336. More runners on base in front of Hamilton, Cruz/Napoli would theoretically increase run production.
@Adam: if he's the most likely to get on base, should we have him bat first instead? Either way, though, you have a point. I'd like to see Wash try it for a few games. Somebody email him.
One thing I am pretty sure about: Napoli and his team leading OPS should be hitting higher than 6th if only to give him more ABs.
What about hitting MY 3rd, Hamilton 4th, Napoli 5th, and Cruz 6th? Batter hitting third needs not only to get on base but also be productive with men on base. MY has a high batting average and it would also help him if Hamilton is hitting behind him.
I would like to point out that just last week, some folks were bitching about how Ron Washington always tinkers with the lineup, and how it's one of the causes of inconsistent play. And here we have someone arguing the exact opposite - that he's too rigid in his lineup thinking, and should play around with it some to try to jump start the offense.
There are studies that show that an optimized line is A not what tradition holds and B not statistically significant (Less than one win per year).So there is that.
I think that the primary reason Mike is batting cleanup is to protect Hamilton. Hamilton sees more pitches to hit when Young is behind him because Young is harder to pitch around than Nelly or Naps, (unless Cruz is on a hot streak). I don't know if there is any stats to back this up, just my thoughts.
mhilgtx - I have not seen those studies but that is interesting. I think it's easy to look at single games or a weeks worth of games where the #4 hitter is cold while someone down the order is white hot and forget that these things tend to even out.
WWJDD - I think this is a little different. The bitching last week was about not putting the best team on the field every night and not having continuity with WHO is in the lineup, not WHERE they are in the lineup. But I get your point...there are differing opinions amongst us all.
Really need Beltre back...that way I can bitch about Napoli hitting 7th!
Below is a link to a discussion of optimizing lineups. The idea is that high-OBP guys should hit 1 and 2 so that the middle of the order can knock them in. MY is a high-OBP guy; Andrus isn't. The number 4 hitter should be your best hitter with power. That really doesn't describe MY.
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