Saturday, June 11, 2011

Riggleman's Sabermetric Lineup

Jim Riggleman's lineup card today is sure to get a lot of attention and criticism, with Jayson Werth batting lead-off, John Lannan hitting eighth, and Roger Bernadina ninth.

It's unconventional, but sabermetrically sound. First, we know that the additional at bats you get by hitting lead-off are worth more than the additional RBI opportunities you get hitting clean-up. And the most important skill for a lead-off hitter is on-base percentage.

And by hitting Bernadina 9th, Riggleman reduces the extent to which Werth will lose RBI chances hitting lead-off. He'll come up with the bases empty in the first inning, but he won't have an automatic out hitting immediately before him.

Now, Riggleman messes it up a little by hitting Ian Desmond and his .271 OBP in the #2 hole, which is actually the most important spot in the line-up. If he put Mike Morse or Danny Espinosa in the #2 hole and the other in the #4 hole, with maybe Wilson Ramos in the #3 hole, that would be pretty close to perfect.

2 comments:

Positively Half St. said...

Let's have this approach again once Zimmerman returns this week.

Keith said...

No, what would be 'pretty close to perfect' would be a line-up that included Albert Pujols, Jose Bautista, Curtis Granderson, Nelson Cruz, and maybe Adrian Gonzalez -- of course we'd have some issues with defensive positioning, but I could live with those...