The other day, mlb.com ran a look-ahead at each of the teams and their probable lineup, if they started the season with the current lineup.
They showed the Astros lineup as such……
|1) CF – George Springer||2018||.265||.346||.780||102||26||22||71|
|162 gm avg||.265||.356||.824||113||29||32||86|
|2) 3B – Alex Bregman||2018||.286||.394||.926||105||51||31||103|
|162 gm avg||.282||.366||.866||101||46||26||93|
|3) 2B – Jose Altuve||2018||.316||.386||.837||84||29||13||61|
|162 gm avg||.316||.365||.818||93||39||14||67|
|4) SS – Carlos Correa||2018||.239||.323||.728||60||20||15||65|
|162 gm avg||.277||.356||.833||93||35||28||108|
|5) LF – Michael Brantley||2018||.309||.364||.832||89||36||17||76|
|162 gm avg||.295||.351||.781||84||38||13||81|
|6) 1B Yuli Gurriel||2018||.291||.323||.751||70||33||13||85|
|162 gm avg||.281||.323||.772||79||43||19||91|
|7) RF-Josh Reddick||2018||.242||.318||.718||63||13||17||47|
|162 gm avg||.262||.323||.757||77||27||19||73|
|8) DH – Tyler White||2018||.276||.354||.888||27||12||12||42|
|162 gm avg||.248||.319||.777||54||32||22||75|
|9) C- Robinson Chirinos||2018||.222||.338||.757||48||15||18||65|
|162 gm avg||.233||.324||.761||67||26||24||72|
Here at chipalatta, we have done two things. First we are showing how each of the players hit last season. Below it we show the player’s average career stats; what they would be expected to produce in any 162 game section of their career.
The second thing we have done is question the way the lineup is set-up.
The Top 3
We know the argument. We know the Astros won the World Series with George Springer in the leadoff spot. We know he won the WS MVP from the leadoff spot. And we say….so what? In 2016 and 2018 they also did not win the WS with him in the leadoff spot. You are putting a guy with good power stats with so-so on base percentage (5th among this set of players last season), who is a pretty bad base stealer by percentage in the top spot.
Bregman is your best OBP man, but he may also be your best hitter (power plus average) period so let’s hold off on him. Brantley is one of your best hitters with less power and he is a lefty. Jose Altuve? Now there is your leadoff hitter. Great batting average. Great on-base percentage, Very good base stealer. Inconsistent power. So here is a revised top 3 in the order.
1) Altuve – great table setter
2) Brantley – Break up the all-righty top of the lineup with a guy who should take advantage of Altuve being on base 40% of the time and the first baseman stuck holding him on first.
3) Bregman – He’s your best hitter. 51 doubles and 31 HRs looks pretty darned good with folks on base in front of him.
If Correa’s crappy 2018 was based on a bad back, which is likely and if he is healthy and if he is playing to get a much better pay day in 2nd season arbitration, he should be in the cleanup spot. He has shown good batting average, solid power and clutch hitting. He just needs to play more than 100-110 games in a season. Springer would be nice protection for Carlos and you could follow him up with either 1B Yuli Gurriel or DH Tyler White. Nice choices. We go with Gurriel, who was one of the best with runners in scoring position last season.
4) Correa – This should be the year that the 35 HR / 110 RBI SS shows up.
5) Springer – There should be a lot of ducks on the pond when George gets up to bat
6) Gurriel – His OBP keeps him from being higher in the lineup
The Tyler White we saw in 2018 was the best of these three players. You could put him 7th or if he really shines flip him with Springer or Gurriel. The only reason Reddick gets the 7th spot is if you want another lefty sooner in a right-centric lineup. Chirinos or Max Stassi would be the weak link in this chain. If they did go out and pick up catcher J.T. Realmuto, he would need to come in as #6 or 7 in this lineup.
7) White – He could be one of the best #7 hitters in the league
8) Reddick – Josh along with Correa had a crummy 2018. If he continues, they may try to dump his salary at the deadline. Or he could get displaced by young Kyle Tucker or Yordan Alvarez (in the lineup). How that would work in the field is another question.
9) Chirinos / Stassi – Chirinos is not a big average guy, but has plenty of power and is a good RBI guy. Stassi needs to prove he is not a couple month flash-in-the-pan hitter.
Your turn – what would your version of the lineup look like?