Our Optimal Lineup

Sky Kalkman over at Beyond the Boxscore has an interesting couple of articles on how to get the most out of your everyday line-up Via Tom Tango.

Please feel free to follow the links but for those of you refuse here is a quote that gets to the heart of the issue.

Here's how the lineup spots rank in the importance of avoiding outs:

#1, #4, #2, #5, #3, #6, #7, #8, #9

So, you want your best three hitters to hit in the #1, #4, and #2 spots.  Distribute them so OBP is higher in the order and SLG is lower.  Then place your fourth and fifth best hitters, with the #5 spot usually seeing the better hitter, unless he's a high-homerun guy.  Then place your four remaining hitters in decreasing order of overall hitting ability, with basestealers ahead of singles hitters.  Finally, stop talking like the lineup is a make-or-break decision.

An interesting concept in and of itself but coupled with the breaking news from earlier today and it seems we have the recipe for a fan-post.  So without furthur ado I give you the optimal line-up for the 2009 SF Giants.

Ok maybe a little more ado.  Before we get to the final product lets take a look at how Chone projects our offense based on runs created above average per 150 games.

Here are the numbers from best to worst for the 8 projected starters (giving Frandsen the nod)....


Winn -

0.281 0.341 0.412 -5

Lewis -

0.262 0.346 0.404 -5

Rowand -

0.273 0.338 0.421 -7

Renteria -

0.283 0.345 0.408 -7

Frandsen -

0.288 0.343 0.411 -7

Ishikawa -

0.248 0.322 0.432 -9

Molina -

0.276 0.314 0.435 -10

Sandoval -  

0.283 0.315 0.426 -12

Sorry about the formatting I dont really know what I'm doing

So according to Tango and Kalkman (whom I am basically copying with this fanpost) we would want our best 3 hitters in the #1, #2, and #4 spots.  With the highest OBP at the top and the power towards the middle.

So for our lead-off spot it really is a toss up between Lewis and Winn.  Either would do nicely but I tend to buy into the hype and think that Lewis will hit for more power.  So I'm going with Winn here.

Next we take our "best" remaining hitters and place them in the #2 and #4 spots based on projected OBP (#2) and SLG (#4).  That to me says Lewis and Rowand respectively.

So far we have Winn, Lewis, XXX, Rowand.  For the #3 and #5 spots we want the better hitter in the 5-hole with the player most reliant upon homeruns in the #3 spot. I'm going with Frandsen 3rd and Renteria 5th.

Placing the following 3 hitters in order of ability we end up with Ishikawa, Molina, Sandoval.

So the final product looks something like this.

  1. Winn
  2. Lewis
  3. Frandsen
  4. Rowand
  5. Renteria
  6. Ishikawa
  7. Molina
  8. Sandoval
  9. Pitcher

Alright I have to stop here and say two things.  First, I will admit that I havent had the most realistic outlook concerning this years offense.   But I had no idea it was gonna be this bad.  That line-up optimized to the max still looks like a steaming pile.

Secondly, are we putting too much stock into Pablo's ability to save us.  I know the dude can hit bad balls but I am starting to wonder how much of an impact he is really going to make if he cant keep his BA high.

Anywho, here it is.  I hope you find it interesting and thought provoking.  Let me hear what you think.

This FanPost is reader-generated, and it does not necessarily reflect the views of McCovey Chronicles. If the author uses filler to achieve the minimum word requirement, a moderator may edit the FanPost for his or her own amusement.