A lot of discussion in this off-season has revolved around how to utilize the Astros’ new offensive toys and specifically about constructing a lineup. Surfing around the ‘net, I found an interesting write-up on stat-driven model, but does not require an advance math degree to understand.
There are plenty of other articles on this subject, but let’s see where following this particular line of thinking leads us.
Leadoff. This hitter will come up to the plate more times than any other hitter, so hitting and getting on base is much more critical than pure speed. Power is not as important as other factors as he will have less folks on base than other key spots. He should be one of the top 3 hitters on the team with more OBP than power.
Astro who best fits this. Jose Altuve
Two hole. Instead of a bunt him up, move him over type hitter, this needs to be one of the top 3 hitters on the club, where OBP is more important than power. He will be up in more critical ABs than the number 3 hitter.
Astro who best fits this. Carlos Correa
Third Spot. Instead of putting your very best hitter in this spot – the theory says this spot should be filled after 1,2,4 and 5. He does not see as many base runners when he comes up as the 4 and 5 spot and often is up with two outs and nobody on.
Astro who best fits this. Alex Bregman
Cleanup. This is one of the most critical spots, the guy who comes up with the most opportunities to drive in runs and should be one of the top 3 hitters and the one with the most power.
Astro who best fits this. Carlos Beltran
#5 Guy. He should be the fourth best hitter and the one who can drive in runs and take walks and who does not live and die with the home run.
Astro who best fits this. George Springer
6 thru 9. These should be the next 4 hitters in descending order.
Astro who best fits….
- #6. Josh Reddick
- #7. Yulieski Gurriel
- #8. Brian McCann
- #9. Nori Aoki
Obviously, everything from injuries, to matchups, to manager hunches and performance (or lack of) will effect the way the lineup is constructed this season, so this is just a fun and futile exercise.
A few questions then for you dear readers:
- Do you agree with the thought process behind this article?
- Do you think the folks shown match that thought process?
- How would you construct the lineup and why?