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Batting order fun

From the Chronicle:

Here's one guess (at the batting order): Center fielder Andres Torres, second baseman Sanchez, first baseman Aubrey Huff, catcher Buster Posey, shortstop Miguel Tejada, left fielder Pat Burrell (or Mark DeRosa), third baseman Pablo Sandoval and right fielder Cody Ross.

The archetype of an MLB lineup would be something like this:

  1. Fast guy, hopefully one who gets on base
  2. Guy with the highest batting average among players under 15 HR
  3. Best hitter
  4. Wait, this guy could be the best hitter
  5. Power, but not quite as much as the preceding two hitters
  6. Little less power...
  7. Little less power, with the possibility of no power by now...
  8. Worst hitter

So if the Giants go with the lineup suggested by John Shea, they’re on track for the first four. Then you get to Miguel Tejada, who hasn’t cracked the 20-homer barrier in four years, and the archetype starts to fall apart a little bit. But looking at a proposed batting order makes me think one thing: the Giants now have seven hitters would make more sense as a cleanup hitter than the hitter who actually held the position from 2007 through 2009. It’s not the most exciting lineup in the world, but it’s free from the automatic outs that festooned just about every lineup in the post-Bonds era

It’s a little odd to type that. It wasn’t that long ago that the Giants lineup made me want to eat glass. Maybe the Mariners should look into getting some of them free outfielders from one of those Florida teams. They’re free! You just have to ask real nice-like.

With the caveat that, no, batting orders really don’t mean a whole lot over a season, here’s my attempt at building a 2011 batting order:


And some explanations...

  • Huff hitting second is just a way to get him -- and Posey -- some more at-bats over a full season. Huff isn’t a slug, and he can take a walk, so it’s not too much of a stretch.
  • Sandoval at the bottom was a tough decision. Do you embrace the hacker in him, or do you resist? Part of me wants to put him leadoff with the hope that he’ll at least have one at-bat every game in which he’s focused on making the pitcher work. That’s pretty out there, though. With two outs and runners on, the eighth-place hitter is often asked to expand his zone. Done and done with Sandoval. If he starts hitting again, he can move all the way up to cleanup.
  • Burrell at cleanup is a stretch for someone whose spot isn’t entirely secure, but his ability to work a walk wins me over.
  • Tejada higher than sixth in any lineup is confusing. I’m hoping it doesn’t catch on.

Comment starter: Your turn. Move your pieces around as you see fit. Just know that putting the flag behind your bombs is totally obvious.