As some of you may know, it’s my 24th birthday today. On my birthday, I usually like to post something that relates to both baseball and my birthday, so here’s my run at it today. I’m going to make a lineup–nine hitters and a DH plus a starter and reliever–from players born on June 15.
Starting pitcher is easy (from a historical standpoint). Andy Pettitte. Happy Birthday, Andy. We miss you in the Bronx and I hope you’re killing it in your church’s softball league. Imagine trying ask him to bat lower in the order?
Teammate: Hey, Andy, we’re gonna drop you down today to get Jim some more at bats.
Andy: Excuse me? Which one of us has an RBI single in the World Series?
Teammate: Uh, well, he was out last we–
Andy: Exactly. I do. I’ll be hitting third all season.
Going non-sentimentally, I’d like to go with Tim Lincecum.
Relief Pitcher: There isn’t a lot to pick from, but I’ll roll with Ramiro Mendoza for sentimentality’s sake.
And now the lineup, in batting order:
1. Wade Boggs, 3B. I definitely didn’t realize how good Wade Boggs was until the last few years.
2. Brett Butler, CF. Not a lot of power, but a solid .377 career OBP. Flip him and Boggs if you’d like.
3. Billy Williams, LF. HOF player with an average of 28 HRs per 162 games.
4. Tony Clark, 1B. .351 career wOBA and a .222 IsoP.
5. Dusty Baker, RF. Just don’t let him near the pitching staff.
6. Champ Summers, DH. Starting to thin out a bit; .350 carer OBP, .170 career IsoP.
7. Cliff Pennington, SS. It was either Pennington or Eduardo Nunez.
8. Gene Baker, 2B. The only one with a non-atrocious (87 OPS+) bat who played 2B.
9. Charlie Dexter, C. The only one who caught at all; 84 OPS+.
Let’s run over to the Lineup Analysis tool and see what these guys would do in terms of runs per game.
So it turns out that even with some pretty “meh” players after Dusty Baker at five, this arrangement of players would actually average 5.126 runs per game (830.412), which is more than I would expect. The best optimized lineup would be Boggs/Williams/Pennington/Clark/Summers/G. Baker/D. Baker/Dexter/Butler, and they’d pump out 5.188 runs per game (840.456 per 162). I’m 99.99% sure this is just a testament to how much a lineup can benefit from having a player like Boggs at the top. Anyway, Happy Birthday to Andy, Wade, Tim, Dusty, Billy, Brett, et al. What players share your birthday? Can you field a lineup like this one?
Also, if anyone is going to the game tonight, I’ll be in Section 206 in right field, so come say hello!
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