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Optimal Lineup Construction
Posted: 17 July 2007 05:41 PM   [ Ignore ]

Does anyone know of a simulator that will allow me to plug in different lineups for my co-ed softball team to see which generates the most runs? 

How would you optimize this 12-person lineup?

—Four stud hitters with OBP of .700 who homer in about 1/4 of their at-bats and double in another 1/4 of their at-bats
—Four contact hitters with OBP of .500 who hit mostly singles
—Four women with OBP of about .300

We are having a debate about which is the better lineup philosophy:
A.  Bat in an approximately best-to-worst progression.
B.  Spread out the power guys evenly throughout the lineup (ie, don’t bunch them).

It seems to me that the former is better, but I would like some data to convince the other guys on the team.



Posted: 18 July 2007 01:15 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]

I would just point out that, as you go down the order, each batting position gets fewer plate appearances.  If they want data, it’s easily available in several places (“The Book” has that information, at least).  Therefore, logically, you want your best hitters batting the most.  Hence, the best-to-worst progression. 

However, I doubt it really matters all that much, especially for co-ed softball.  The difference is only a net of a few runs, so you might as well go with the lineup that keeps your team as happy as possible, within reason.

Posted: 21 July 2007 11:37 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]

I’m admitting here that I’m a newb to some of this stuff, so I’ll take the heat if “the book” is generally known already to be this…but “Baseball between the Numbers” contains data on this topic.  That said, I’m inclined to agree with caspian above me.  Depending on the competitiveness of the league in question, some more salient points might be “who has the best OBP after six beers?”