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What's your Opening Day lineup?

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What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Prosecutor » Sun Feb 12, 2012 9:46 am

With Tony stating that Chiz will probably start the season in Columbus, I was thinking about what the Opening Day lineup would look like. If I were Manny Acta, I would go with this:

Against RHP:

Kotchman 1B (.378 OBP, 48 RBI in 500 AB's last year. Looks like a leadoff hitter to me)
Droobs SS
Choo RF
Santana C
Sizemore CF
Hafner DH
Brantley LF
Kipnis 2B
Hannahan 3B

Against LHP:

Donald CF (kills lefties, runs well)
Droobs SS
Choo RF
Santana 1B
Duncan DH
Brantley LF
Kipnis 2B
Marson C
Hannahan 3B
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Rocky55 » Sun Feb 12, 2012 12:57 pm

Prosecutor wrote:With Tony stating that Chiz will probably start the season in Columbus, I was thinking about what the Opening Day lineup would look like. If I were Manny Acta, I would go with this:

Against RHP:

Kotchman 1B (.378 OBP, 48 RBI in 500 AB's last year. Looks like a leadoff hitter to me)
Droobs SS
Choo RF
Santana C
Sizemore CF
Hafner DH
Brantley LF
Kipnis 2B
Hannahan 3B

Against LHP:

Donald CF (kills lefties, runs well)
Droobs SS
Choo RF
Santana 1B
Duncan DH
Brantley LF
Kipnis 2B
Marson C
Hannahan 3B

I like Donald at leadoff VS LHP's. Don't like Slowpoke Kotchman batting leadoff. We don't need a station to station guy batting leadoff. I'd bat Kip in 5th(.551 Slg) VS RHP's & 2nd(.349 OBP) VS LHP's.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby daingean » Sun Feb 12, 2012 1:02 pm

Brantley LF Brantley
Asdrubal SS Donald 2B
Choo RF Asdrubal
Santana C Santana 1b
Sizemore CF Choo
Hafner DH Sizemore
Kipnis 2B Duncan DH
Kotchman 1B Hannahan
Chizenhall 3B Marson

I do think Donald will float between LF/2B/CF giving days off for Kip/Brantley/Sizemore/Hafner. I also think Chiz will win a spot on the 25 and will start when Kotchman plays 1B.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby GhostofTedCox » Sun Feb 12, 2012 1:37 pm

I'm torn on this one. I'm a big Kipnis fan and think he could have a big season. I would like to see him higher in the order. Call me crazy, but I might even try him at leadoff. I'm sure he would get over 20 SB.

Also I'm thinking Kotchman at #5. He has not been an RBI guy, but if he gets on base, maybe Hafner could clean it up. (Hafner is an RBI guy, in his memories at least.)

Who ever winds up as the alternate CF will probably play at least twice a week. I would try to keep Donald as an INF replacement.

I think these lineups put pressure on the opposition right at the top.
VS. RHP
J. KIPNIS 2B
A. CABRERA SS
S. CHOO RF
C. SANTANA C
C. KOTCHMAN 1B
T. HAFNER DH
G. SIZEMORE CF
J. HANNAHAN 3B
M. BRANTLEY LF

VS. LHP
A. CABRERA SS
J. KIPNIS 2B
S. CHOO RF
C. SANTANA 1B
S. DUNCAN DH (OBP VS. LHP 50 POINTS HIGHER THAN PRONK)
R. CANZLER LF (I'm rooting for this guy.)
J. HANNAHAN 3B
L. MARSON C
M. BRANTLEY CF (Sizemore's days off/DL time)
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Rocky55 » Sun Feb 12, 2012 1:42 pm

daingean wrote:Brantley LF Brantley
Asdrubal SS Donald 2B
Choo RF Asdrubal
Santana C Santana 1b
Sizemore CF Choo
Hafner DH Sizemore
Kipnis 2B Duncan DH
Kotchman 1B Hannahan
Chizenhall 3B Marson

I do think Donald will float between LF/2B/CF giving days off for Kip/Brantley/Sizemore/Hafner. I also think Chiz will win a spot on the 25 and will start when Kotchman plays 1B.

Good idea having "Wild Thing" Chisenhall playing with Kotchman there to minimize the damage. :biggrin:
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Prosecutor » Sun Feb 12, 2012 8:45 pm

Some of these lineups include Chisenhall. Tony's current article says he'll be in Columbus.

I don't want Brantley hitting leadoff with his .318 OBP last year. I don't care if he can run faster than Kotchman, the idea is to get on base and .378 beats .318, so until Brantley gets his OBP north of .350, he's batting down in the lineup.

Also, he only stole 13 bases in 114 games last year, so it's not like his speed is much of a factor since he really doesn't know how to use it.

Kipnis had the highest slugging percentage on the Indians last year at .507, although it was only 136 ABs. He hit seven HRs in 36 games, which projects to 28 HRs in 144 games. I don't see this guy as a leadoff hitter. He looks more like a Carlos Baerga if he reaches his potential - a stocky 2nd baseman who hits .300 with 20+ HRs. Finally, he has only 136 big league at-bats, so I don't want to put the pressure of setting the table on him in what is essentially his rookie year.

Kotchman is a six-year vet. Yeah, he's slow, but it's all about getting on base and creating a hole on the right side of the infield for the left-handed hitters coming up behind him. And forcing the pitcher to pitch from the stretch. Manny doesn't like to swipe a lot of bags in the first place, and why risk getting thrown out with Droobs, Choo, and the Ax Man coming up?
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby daingean » Sun Feb 12, 2012 9:36 pm

Rocky55 wrote:
daingean wrote:Brantley LF Brantley
Asdrubal SS Donald 2B
Choo RF Asdrubal
Santana C Santana 1b
Sizemore CF Choo
Hafner DH Sizemore
Kipnis 2B Duncan DH
Kotchman 1B Hannahan
Chizenhall 3B Marson

I do think Donald will float between LF/2B/CF giving days off for Kip/Brantley/Sizemore/Hafner. I also think Chiz will win a spot on the 25 and will start when Kotchman plays 1B.

Good idea having "Wild Thing" Chisenhall playing with Kotchman there to minimize the damage. :biggrin:


That is the only way I can justify having Kotchman on the team is to be the glove man for Chisenhall......yes Kotchman gets on base but it doesn't amount to scoring. Look at his career stats......he just does not have the instincts to score runs or drive in runs....
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby daingean » Sun Feb 12, 2012 9:41 pm

Prosecutor wrote:Some of these lineups include Chisenhall. Tony's current article says he'll be in Columbus.

I don't want Brantley hitting leadoff with his .318 OBP last year. I don't care if he can run faster than Kotchman, the idea is to get on base and .378 beats .318, so until Brantley gets his OBP north of .350, he's batting down in the lineup.

Also, he only stole 13 bases in 114 games last year, so it's not like his speed is much of a factor since he really doesn't know how to use it.

Kipnis had the highest slugging percentage on the Indians last year at .507, although it was only 136 ABs. He hit seven HRs in 36 games, which projects to 28 HRs in 144 games. I don't see this guy as a leadoff hitter. He looks more like a Carlos Baerga if he reaches his potential - a stocky 2nd baseman who hits .300 with 20+ HRs. Finally, he has only 136 big league at-bats, so I don't want to put the pressure of setting the table on him in what is essentially his rookie year.

Kotchman is a six-year vet. Yeah, he's slow, but it's all about getting on base and creating a hole on the right side of the infield for the left-handed hitters coming up behind him. And forcing the pitcher to pitch from the stretch. Manny doesn't like to swipe a lot of bags in the first place, and why risk getting thrown out with Droobs, Choo, and the Ax Man coming up?


I read Tony's article and what I got out of it is that Chisenhall will have to earn his way onto the 25 man roster. I think he will.

As for Kotchman.....I've said it over and over.....the guy may be able to get on base but he's played on a few pretty good teams (Angels, Braves, Rays) and despite all of his high OBP (which really isn't that high (only .336 for his career) and never really scored or drove in runners at an acceptable rate.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Rocky55 » Mon Feb 13, 2012 12:18 am

Prosecutor wrote:Some of these lineups include Chisenhall. Tony's current article says he'll be in Columbus.

I don't want Brantley hitting leadoff with his .318 OBP last year. I don't care if he can run faster than Kotchman, the idea is to get on base and .378 beats .318, so until Brantley gets his OBP north of .350, he's batting down in the lineup.

Also, he only stole 13 bases in 114 games last year, so it's not like his speed is much of a factor since he really doesn't know how to use it.

Kipnis had the highest slugging percentage on the Indians last year at .507, although it was only 136 ABs. He hit seven HRs in 36 games, which projects to 28 HRs in 144 games. I don't see this guy as a leadoff hitter. He looks more like a Carlos Baerga if he reaches his potential - a stocky 2nd baseman who hits .300 with 20+ HRs. Finally, he has only 136 big league at-bats, so I don't want to put the pressure of setting the table on him in what is essentially his rookie year.

Kotchman is a six-year vet. Yeah, he's slow, but it's all about getting on base and creating a hole on the right side of the infield for the left-handed hitters coming up behind him. And forcing the pitcher to pitch from the stretch. Manny doesn't like to swipe a lot of bags in the first place, and why risk getting thrown out with Droobs, Choo, and the Ax Man coming up?

If you look at Kip's splits he actually got on base at a higher rate VS LHP's with a much higher Slg VS RHP's. Taking in to account his limited opportunities VS LHP's, that's why I suggest batting him high in the order against lefties. Against righties he seems to look to drive the ball, so we move him to middle of the order to take advantage. I could see hitting him leadoff against lefties as he's a good baserunner with decent speed. I like the Baerga comp with the bat but Kip's more athletic & quicker & a better baserunner. Baerga had a WAY better arm though.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Chiefroy » Mon Feb 13, 2012 3:54 am

Versus righthanded starters:

1. Brantley
2. Cabrera
3. Sizemore
4. Santana
5. Choo
6. Hafner
7. Kotchman
8. Kipnis (young guy, leave down here awhile)
9. Hannahan

Versus lefthanded starters:

1. Donald CF (hopefully can handle the position)
2. Cabrera
3. Choo
4. Santana C
5. Hafner
6. Duncan LF
7. Kotchman
8. Kipnis
9. Hannahan

Naturally Marson and the 4th bench guy will get starts also. But if we opened the season facing a lefty, this is what I'd put against him, assuming Donald can play CF.

Let me amend that...if we opened the season vs a lefty, I'd still have Sizemore and Brantley in the opening day lineup. But vs lefties in general, no.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Prosecutor » Mon Feb 13, 2012 9:37 am

Rocky55 wrote:If you look at Kip's splits he actually got on base at a higher rate VS LHP's with a much higher Slg VS RHP's. Taking in to account his limited opportunities VS LHP's, that's why I suggest batting him high in the order against lefties. Against righties he seems to look to drive the ball, so we move him to middle of the order to take advantage. I could see hitting him leadoff against lefties as he's a good baserunner with decent speed. I like the Baerga comp with the bat but Kip's more athletic & quicker & a better baserunner. Baerga had a WAY better arm though.


Kipnis had a .349 OBP against lefties last year, which is good, but we're looking at a sample size of 38 ABs. Not enough to draw any valid conclusions, IMO.

I don't like the idea of putting rookies in key spots in the lineup until they prove they are ready. The Tribe forced Brantley into the leadoff spot before he was ready and he was back in the minors within a month. That's why I would bat Kipnis and Chisenhall (if he's the starting third baseman) down in the lineup until they prove they deserve to be moved up.

I can see putting Kipnis in the middle of the order against righties but in place of who? Choo? Sizemore? Santana? Grady? Hafner? We have so many left-handed veteran run producers that there is no spot for him right now. It's like when Manny Ramirez came up and they had him hitting seventh behind Baerga, Belle, Murray, and Thome. Eventually Manny moved up, but he was able to break in by hitting in a lower pressure situation which was good for him in the long run.

Jason Donald hit .377 with a .424 OBP against lefties last year in 61 ABs. As a rookie in 2010 he hit .286 with a .390 OBP against lefties. I would give him first shot at the leadoff spot against lefties. He's not really a base stealer but he runs well enough to score from second on a single and from first on a double. But the main thing is he gets on base at a .400 rate or over and he hits a lot of doubles.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Rocky55 » Mon Feb 13, 2012 12:18 pm

Here's my shot:

LHP

Kipnis(2B): .263/.349/.395

Choo(RF): .264/.338/.332

Donald(CF): .377/.424/.525

Santana(DH): .318/.428/.536

Cabrera(SS): .291/.333/.444

Chiz(3B): .260/.288/.600

Marson(C): 297/.387/.407

Kotchman(1B): .289/.340/.369

Duncan(LF): .245/.316/.363

RHP

Sizemore(CF): .268/.375/.433

Cabrera(SS): .265/.331/.468

Choo(RF): .319/.433/.566

Hafner(DH): .302/.404/.482

Duncan(LF): .273/.331/.587

Kipnis(2B): .276/.327/.551

Santana(C): .201/.314/.418

Hanahan(3B): ,296/.367/.444

Kotchman(1B): .313/.394/.444

Left out was Brantley. He only hits RHP well, but not nearly as good as Duncan. Against LHP Duncan's OPS is .154 higher. With resting Grady vs LHP, if Donald holds up as a CF, The only spot I see for Brantley is as a defensive replacement guy, unless someone gets hurt. We need him for CF by '13 at the latest so maybe he can get spot starts vs RHP in all of the OF positions or even 1B.

The biggest surprise was Santana vs RHP in '11 but he was so much better in '10 (1.002 OPS) that I think he bounces back. If he hits RHP like '10 & LHP like '11 we're looking at an MVP candidate. I like having him DH vs LHP to rest his legs. With Kotchman on board there's no need to play him at 1B IMO.

On Kipnis, I think he's mature enough to hit wherever we ask him. He's got the Longoria mentality & confidence & like Longoria shouldn't be treated the way a "normal" young guy is treated.

If Chiz starts in CBus just bat Hanny 9th vs LHP's & move everyone up a notch.

I should also say that the stats I used were in the last full healthy season for each guy. I also know this seems like moving guys around a lot in the batting order but it seems to be working for Maddon over in TB.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Hermie13 » Mon Feb 13, 2012 1:46 pm

Personally would like to see Santana DH some...but I doubt it happens. Acta doesn't like having his only other catcher DH. Personally think it's not that big a deal, but he does (as do lots of managers).

And while I'm glad I'm not the only one that thinks Brantley shouldn't be guaranteed anything....I can't picture him not being in the lineup against righties to start unless he's hurt.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby daingean » Mon Feb 13, 2012 1:54 pm

Hermie13 wrote:Personally would like to see Santana DH some...but I doubt it happens. Acta doesn't like having his only other catcher DH. Personally think it's not that big a deal, but he does (as do lots of managers).

And while I'm glad I'm not the only one that thinks Brantley shouldn't be guaranteed anything....I can't picture him not being in the lineup against righties to start unless he's hurt.


I think this will be a watershed year for Brantley. The Indians need to find out if he's a lead-off hitter or not. I think his only value is in the 1 spot. The only other value spot is if he can be an everyday CF. If he isn't a lead-off guy by mid-season, I think the Tribe should be shopping him out there. Offensively he doesn't do enough for a LF unless he can be a lead-off hitter.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Prosecutor » Mon Feb 13, 2012 2:55 pm

I agree with daingean. I can't see sitting Brantley against RHP and playing Duncan in LF 80% of the games. Yes, Duncan put up better offensive numbers against RHP last year, but Brantley provides a lot more defense and the main thing is they need to see what they have in him. This is indeed a watershed year for him, and probably LaPorta, too. We need to find out what we got for Sabathia once and for all.

The best scenario for Duncan is that he has a great first half as a part-time DH/1B/LF/pinch hitter and we deal him at the deadline for a decent prospect like McAlister or Barnes. We got those guys for Austin Kearns and Ryan Garko. Duncan is the same kind of player.

LaPorta needs to destroy AAA pitching and then do well when he gets a chance to DH in Cleveland when Hafner goes down with an injury.

I still think the keys to this season will be Ubaldo, Grady, and Choo.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Rocky55 » Mon Feb 13, 2012 3:22 pm

Prosecutor wrote:I agree with daingean. I can't see sitting Brantley against RHP and playing Duncan in LF 80% of the games. Yes, Duncan put up better offensive numbers against RHP last year, but Brantley provides a lot more defense and the main thing is they need to see what they have in him. This is indeed a watershed year for him, and probably LaPorta, too. We need to find out what we got for Sabathia once and for all.

The best scenario for Duncan is that he has a great first half as a part-time DH/1B/LF/pinch hitter and we deal him at the deadline for a decent prospect like McAlister or Barnes. We got those guys for Austin Kearns and Ryan Garko. Duncan is the same kind of player.

LaPorta needs to destroy AAA pitching and then do well when he gets a chance to DH in Cleveland when Hafner goes down with an injury.

I still think the keys to this season will be Ubaldo, Grady, and Choo.

I tried like heck to justify putting Brantley in the lineup, just because I like his game & really wanted to do it. Couldn't justify it against RHP over Duncan. Tried to against LHP & couldn't fit the .214/.282/.243/.525 line, with 30 hits & 4 doubles the only XBH in 140 AB. He does have a .782 OPS against RHP but I couldn't figure out what to do with Duncan/Kotchman as they're both better against RHP. The thing that encouraged me the most was how potent a lineup we could field no matter who was pitching. When you see it written down in black & white it's pretty impressive.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Prosecutor » Mon Feb 13, 2012 10:11 pm

Rocky55 wrote:I tried like heck to justify putting Brantley in the lineup, just because I like his game & really wanted to do it. Couldn't justify it against RHP over Duncan. Tried to against LHP & couldn't fit the .214/.282/.243/.525 line, with 30 hits & 4 doubles the only XBH in 140 AB. He does have a .782 OPS against RHP but I couldn't figure out what to do with Duncan/Kotchman as they're both better against RHP. The thing that encouraged me the most was how potent a lineup we could field no matter who was pitching. When you see it written down in black & white it's pretty impressive.


Duncan OPS 2011:

vs. LHP - .679
vs. RHP - .918

That's about as dramatic a reverse split as you're going to see. Question is - is that the real Shelly Duncan?

Duncan OPS 2010:

vs. LHP - 857
vs. RHP - .661

Back to what you would expect. I'm thinking 2011 was an anomaly.

I looked at years prior to 2010 but he didn't have enough ML at-bats to make a valid sample size. The guy is 32 and has very little major league experience - less than 600 career at-bats.

If Duncan could reasonably be expected to put up another .900+ OPS against right-handed pitching this year, then I'd agree he should be in left field and we'll put up with his defense and lack of speed on the bases. But I don't think it's realistic to expect another OPS like that, especially if he got 450 at-bats instead of only 121.

I don't think the Indians are even considering starting Duncan in left over Brantley. But after the way Duncan crushed right-handed pitching last year, mostly in September, you could make the argument. Dunc got 37% of his at-bats and 7 of his 11 home runs last year in September, after Brantley got hurt. I'm suspicious of September statistics.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Chiefroy » Tue Feb 14, 2012 12:18 am

Rocky, there's no way Santana bats 7th vs anybody. His l/r splits flip-flopped dramatically from 2010 to 2011. They should be a lot closer this year. Should be .800+ OPS from both sides and no lower than 5th in the order even if he's struggling.

Sizemore is the key, imho. If he's healthy, I think he'll produce. I don't like him at leadoff because I don't think they want him stealing bases and risking injury. Several years ago, he looked liked a 3 hitter who was batting leadoff out of necessity. We had no one else for the role. Brantley was supposed to be the guy; we need to find out. Brantley's health and the experience he now has should hopefully allow him to become the high OBP, base-stealing threat type of guy we need at the top. If he can't do it, Grady can return to that role, at least vs RH pitching. Grady may even start the season at lead-off, I just prefer him at #3; he seems more of a slugger these days if anything. Give him the RBI opportunties he didn't have when he was leading off. But wherever he bats, if Sizemore is producing, we will be scoring runs.

If Travis Hafner can come close to the hitter he used to be vs lefties, he'll get the vast majority of DH ABs. I think he'll get the chance early on. Sizemore also, will probably be left in at times vs lefties, just to see what he can do. We have to think about trade value for these guys, just in case. And they are our vets and our should-be "leaders" of the team.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Prosecutor » Tue Feb 14, 2012 9:53 am

It's time to give up on the idea of Sizemore as a leadoff hitter. Age and injuries have taken their toll and he's no longer a base stealer. The last thing they want him to do is blow out his knee again trying to steal a base. They need his defense in center field and his bat in the lineup. They have to protect his knees at all costs. The less sliding he does the better.

Grady hit 33 HR's the last year he was healthy. The only time he was somewhat healthy last year was from his first game on Apr. 17 until he got hurt on May 10, a stretch of 78 at-bats where he hit .282, slugged 6 HR's, and walked exactly four times. Grady is strictly a power hitter now. He's a free swinger who chases bad pitches. He's not going to have a high OBP and he won't be stealing any bases. I would bat him 5th or 6th against right-handed pitching. Santana has a high OBP so I would bat Grady behind Santana and Choo so he can hit with men on base. With Hafner on deck, Grady should get some fastballs to hit.

The Indians are not going to manufacture runs and play small ball this year. They're going to swing away. Droobs has grown into a slugger who hit 26 HRs last year. Choo, Santana, and Grady are established 20+ HR hitters. Kipnis had a .500 slugging percentage in limited at-bats. Kotchman and Hafner are veteran hitters who won't hit a lot of HRs but have high OBPs. This team doesn't have much speed but they can swing the bats.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Hermie13 » Tue Feb 14, 2012 1:34 pm

daingean wrote:I think this will be a watershed year for Brantley. The Indians need to find out if he's a lead-off hitter or not. I think his only value is in the 1 spot. The only other value spot is if he can be an everyday CF. If he isn't a lead-off guy by mid-season, I think the Tribe should be shopping him out there. Offensively he doesn't do enough for a LF unless he can be a lead-off hitter.


I agree and disagree. I agree this is a big year for Brantley, but don't think his only value is as a leadoff guy. He actually hit very well with men on base last year (2nd highest team average behind only Hafner). Small sample but if he can do that again he does have value in the 6/7 hole. He did hit over .300 with men on base in 2010 as well for what it's worth. One reason I like him in the 6/7 hole a lot better than leadoff this season. Need guys behind Santana and Choo that can drive them in.

I feel some people are putting WAY too much emphasis on stolen bases and guys like that batting leadoff. Stolen bases are nice but are not needed for a leadoff hitter. Don't get me wrong, not saying that having your leadoff guy steal bases is bad...but it's not an neccesity.

To me the bigger issue with Brantley is can he play CF full-time. Tribe expressed their concerns over that earlier this off-season, and to this point Brantley has not shown he can play the position well enough to warrant handing him the everyday job. We need him to play CF long-term more than hitting leadoff IMO as his bat fits elsewhere in the lineup.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Prosecutor » Tue Feb 14, 2012 1:50 pm

That's a great point, Herm. Looking up the exact numbers for Brantley in 2010 and 2011:

2010

Runners on base: .304
Leading off an inning .231 (.290 OBP)

2011

Runners on base: .327
Leading off an inning: .202 (.260 OBP)

Clearly Brantley has established he is a better hitter with runners on than leading off. The fact that 38% of the strikes on him were called strikes as opposed to the major league average of 29% indicates he's taking a lot of good pitches in an effort to "work the count" and draw a walk. He's been trying to be a good leadoff hitter, but the numbers indicate he's better off being aggressive and swinging at the first good pitch he sees.

The Tribe needs to stop trying to pound a square peg into a round hole, put this guy in the 6th or 7th spot, and tell him to swing the bat.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby daingean » Tue Feb 14, 2012 1:56 pm

Hermie13 wrote:I agree and disagree. I agree this is a big year for Brantley, but don't think his only value is as a leadoff guy. He actually hit very well with men on base last year (2nd highest team average behind only Hafner). Small sample but if he can do that again he does have value in the 6/7 hole. He did hit over .300 with men on base in 2010 as well for what it's worth. One reason I like him in the 6/7 hole a lot better than leadoff this season. Need guys behind Santana and Choo that can drive them in.

I feel some people are putting WAY too much emphasis on stolen bases and guys like that batting leadoff. Stolen bases are nice but are not needed for a leadoff hitter. Don't get me wrong, not saying that having your leadoff guy steal bases is bad...but it's not an neccesity.

To me the bigger issue with Brantley is can he play CF full-time. Tribe expressed their concerns over that earlier this off-season, and to this point Brantley has not shown he can play the position well enough to warrant handing him the everyday job. We need him to play CF long-term more than hitting leadoff IMO as his bat fits elsewhere in the lineup.


I don't think SB's are the thing that makes a lead-off hitter. They are certainly in the mix and add value. Most importantly in a lead-off hitter is (not necessarily in this order):

1. seeing pitches. A good lead-off guy will see the pitchers arsenal on that day giving guys down the line the ability to know what is good/bad for the guy that day (many pitchers have to make adjustments during a game but a lead off guy gives the rest of the team that information). This is probably more important in amateur ball than the pros because of the advancement of scouting and guys seeing guys more often.

2. Baserunning. A table-setter has to be able to go from first to third on a hit to RF. Be able to score from 2nd on a base hit and score from 1st on a double. Those attributes can be the difference in 30-40 runs over the course of 162 games. Certainly a good SB guy adds to this ability and it also puts pressure on the defense and allows #2-#4 guys to see more fastballs.

3. Ability to get on base. Guys are not valuable unless they get on base. I don't care if it is by hit, walk, error, hit by pitch, or defensive interference. Getting on-base is important (but getting on base doesn't help unless you can do something with that ability - you still have to score runs).

4. Give the line-up energy. Certainly scoring a run gives a team energy but that is not the only way. Speed certainly helps in beating out an infield hit or creating a forced error (defender rushes a throw). Also seeing a lot of pitches also affects the defense in a negative way and forcing errors has a negative affect on the opposing pitcher. All of this helps the team gain momentum which is what you want out of the top of the line-up.

Conversely, what I like to see out of the bottom of a line-up is turning over the line-up. Getting the run producers up at the plate more means more runs scored.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Hermie13 » Tue Feb 14, 2012 2:00 pm

daingean wrote:
Hermie13 wrote:I agree and disagree. I agree this is a big year for Brantley, but don't think his only value is as a leadoff guy. He actually hit very well with men on base last year (2nd highest team average behind only Hafner). Small sample but if he can do that again he does have value in the 6/7 hole. He did hit over .300 with men on base in 2010 as well for what it's worth. One reason I like him in the 6/7 hole a lot better than leadoff this season. Need guys behind Santana and Choo that can drive them in.

I feel some people are putting WAY too much emphasis on stolen bases and guys like that batting leadoff. Stolen bases are nice but are not needed for a leadoff hitter. Don't get me wrong, not saying that having your leadoff guy steal bases is bad...but it's not an neccesity.

To me the bigger issue with Brantley is can he play CF full-time. Tribe expressed their concerns over that earlier this off-season, and to this point Brantley has not shown he can play the position well enough to warrant handing him the everyday job. We need him to play CF long-term more than hitting leadoff IMO as his bat fits elsewhere in the lineup.


I don't think SB's are the thing that makes a lead-off hitter. They are certainly in the mix and add value. Most importantly in a lead-off hitter is (not necessarily in this order):

1. seeing pitches. A good lead-off guy will see the pitchers arsenal on that day giving guys down the line the ability to know what is good/bad for the guy that day (many pitchers have to make adjustments during a game but a lead off guy gives the rest of the team that information). This is probably more important in amateur ball than the pros because of the advancement of scouting and guys seeing guys more often.

2. Baserunning. A table-setter has to be able to go from first to third on a hit to RF. Be able to score from 2nd on a base hit and score from 1st on a double. Those attributes can be the difference in 30-40 runs over the course of 162 games. Certainly a good SB guy adds to this ability and it also puts pressure on the defense and allows #2-#4 guys to see more fastballs.

3. Ability to get on base. Guys are not valuable unless they get on base. I don't care if it is by hit, walk, error, hit by pitch, or defensive interference. Getting on-base is important (but getting on base doesn't help unless you can do something with that ability - you still have to score runs).

4. Give the line-up energy. Certainly scoring a run gives a team energy but that is not the only way. Speed certainly helps in beating out an infield hit or creating a forced error (defender rushes a throw). Also seeing a lot of pitches also affects the defense in a negative way and forcing errors has a negative affect on the opposing pitcher. All of this helps the team gain momentum which is what you want out of the top of the line-up.

Conversely, what I like to see out of the bottom of a line-up is turning over the line-up. Getting the run producers up at the plate more means more runs scored.


This is absolutely #1 when it comes to a leadoff hitter. You can't go from 1st to 3rd on a single or 2nd to home if you're not on base. Seeing pitches is nice, but if you get on base on the first pitch of the game, so be it.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby daingean » Tue Feb 14, 2012 2:10 pm

Hermie13 wrote:
daingean wrote:
Hermie13 wrote:I agree and disagree. I agree this is a big year for Brantley, but don't think his only value is as a leadoff guy. He actually hit very well with men on base last year (2nd highest team average behind only Hafner). Small sample but if he can do that again he does have value in the 6/7 hole. He did hit over .300 with men on base in 2010 as well for what it's worth. One reason I like him in the 6/7 hole a lot better than leadoff this season. Need guys behind Santana and Choo that can drive them in.

I feel some people are putting WAY too much emphasis on stolen bases and guys like that batting leadoff. Stolen bases are nice but are not needed for a leadoff hitter. Don't get me wrong, not saying that having your leadoff guy steal bases is bad...but it's not an neccesity.

To me the bigger issue with Brantley is can he play CF full-time. Tribe expressed their concerns over that earlier this off-season, and to this point Brantley has not shown he can play the position well enough to warrant handing him the everyday job. We need him to play CF long-term more than hitting leadoff IMO as his bat fits elsewhere in the lineup.


I don't think SB's are the thing that makes a lead-off hitter. They are certainly in the mix and add value. Most importantly in a lead-off hitter is (not necessarily in this order):

1. seeing pitches. A good lead-off guy will see the pitchers arsenal on that day giving guys down the line the ability to know what is good/bad for the guy that day (many pitchers have to make adjustments during a game but a lead off guy gives the rest of the team that information). This is probably more important in amateur ball than the pros because of the advancement of scouting and guys seeing guys more often.

2. Baserunning. A table-setter has to be able to go from first to third on a hit to RF. Be able to score from 2nd on a base hit and score from 1st on a double. Those attributes can be the difference in 30-40 runs over the course of 162 games. Certainly a good SB guy adds to this ability and it also puts pressure on the defense and allows #2-#4 guys to see more fastballs.

3. Ability to get on base. Guys are not valuable unless they get on base. I don't care if it is by hit, walk, error, hit by pitch, or defensive interference. Getting on-base is important (but getting on base doesn't help unless you can do something with that ability - you still have to score runs).

4. Give the line-up energy. Certainly scoring a run gives a team energy but that is not the only way. Speed certainly helps in beating out an infield hit or creating a forced error (defender rushes a throw). Also seeing a lot of pitches also affects the defense in a negative way and forcing errors has a negative affect on the opposing pitcher. All of this helps the team gain momentum which is what you want out of the top of the line-up.

Conversely, what I like to see out of the bottom of a line-up is turning over the line-up. Getting the run producers up at the plate more means more runs scored.


This is absolutely #1 when it comes to a leadoff hitter. You can't go from 1st to 3rd on a single or 2nd to home if you're not on base. Seeing pitches is nice, but if you get on base on the first pitch of the game, so be it.


yes but if you can only get on base and cannot do the others, you will also be a failure at lead-off. A lead-off hitter has to have elements of all 4 of these to be successful. Most of the intangibles that make a good lead-off are not found in the stat books. My point is that wanting a speed guy at the top of the line-up to the SB stat is a miss characterization of what I see makes a good lead-off hitter. It is part of the equation yes. Also my list is not actually in that order. I do think getting on-base is important (maybe most important at the ML level) but not the whole picture. Certainly seeing pitches is more weighted on the amateur side but still has value in a lead-off guy.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Rocky55 » Tue Feb 14, 2012 7:53 pm

Prosecutor wrote:
Rocky55 wrote:I tried like heck to justify putting Brantley in the lineup, just because I like his game & really wanted to do it. Couldn't justify it against RHP over Duncan. Tried to against LHP & couldn't fit the .214/.282/.243/.525 line, with 30 hits & 4 doubles the only XBH in 140 AB. He does have a .782 OPS against RHP but I couldn't figure out what to do with Duncan/Kotchman as they're both better against RHP. The thing that encouraged me the most was how potent a lineup we could field no matter who was pitching. When you see it written down in black & white it's pretty impressive.


Duncan OPS 2011:

vs. LHP - .679
vs. RHP - .918

That's about as dramatic a reverse split as you're going to see. Question is - is that the real Shelly Duncan?

Duncan OPS 2010:

vs. LHP - 857
vs. RHP - .661

Back to what you would expect. I'm thinking 2011 was an anomaly.

I looked at years prior to 2010 but he didn't have enough ML at-bats to make a valid sample size. The guy is 32 and has very little major league experience - less than 600 career at-bats.

If Duncan could reasonably be expected to put up another .900+ OPS against right-handed pitching this year, then I'd agree he should be in left field and we'll put up with his defense and lack of speed on the bases. But I don't think it's realistic to expect another OPS like that, especially if he got 450 at-bats instead of only 121.

I don't think the Indians are even considering starting Duncan in left over Brantley. But after the way Duncan crushed right-handed pitching last year, mostly in September, you could make the argument. Dunc got 37% of his at-bats and 7 of his 11 home runs last year in September, after Brantley got hurt. I'm suspicious of September statistics.

The difference in Duncan's splits from '10 to '11 had me scratching my head too. He'd always been the platoon guy against LHP. Last season as it was happening I kept waiting for Pluto or Hoynes or even Hammy to mention that Duncan had changed his approach against righties, like opening his stance or cutting down on his swing or whatever. Never heard a peep. I want to think that he's a professional hitter(he really is, technically)who did something over the offseason from '10 to '11 to address his weakness agaainst RHP. He's been pretty productive with the team the last 2 seasons. As I said, I really like Brantley & want to see him play well but if Duncan beats him out, Duncan should play.

I like Grady leading off against RHP precisely because he gets on base. I used stats in his case from '09 because he had 436AB & that's pretty close to what I'd expect from him if he platooned in CF with Donald. I think he could get on base at about a .360 clip with maybe a .450 Slg. He's got great instincts on the basepaths & doesn't make many mental mistakes. I think the key to keeping him healthy is the platoon & sufficient rest.

You know what, of all of the things I put in those lineups the one thing I thought would elicit the most comments has drawn nary a one. What does everyone think of batting Donald 3rd against lefties? Did you check out those stats? Does that lineup not rock? Do Donald & Santana not remind you of Ruth & Gehrig? :wink:
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Hermie13 » Tue Feb 14, 2012 7:59 pm

Rocky55 wrote:You know what, of all of the things I put in those lineups the one thing I thought would elicit the most comments has drawn nary a one. What does everyone think of batting Donald 3rd against lefties? Did you check out those stats? Does that lineup not rock? Do Donald & Santana not remind you of Ruth & Gehrig? :wink:


I don't really hate Donald 3rd, but think leadoff is more appropriate as he doesn't have much power and that OBP is something I'd love leading off.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Prosecutor » Tue Feb 14, 2012 10:26 pm

I had Donald leading off against lefties because of the high OBP and because he's fast getting around the bases. I don't like him hitting 3rd with Asdrubal dropping to 5th. My belief is that young players need to earn their stripes, and it's not good to put too much pressure on them before they're ready. Donald has 428 career at-bats and he's starting out 2012 hitting 3rd? He might hit well there but I'd rather bat him leadoff. Kipnis is not a leadoff hitter and he has even less experience than Donald.

I'm pretty sure we won't be seeing Kipnis leading off with Donald batting 3rd, even if the small sample numbers put up by those guys justify those positions in the order.

If healthy, Grady will hit 25-35 HRs as he has done in the past and as he was on pace to do last year before he hurt himself in May. I'd rather have him hitting 5th behind Santana, who gets on base a lot.

As for Duncan, I'm sure I saw a quote from him last year where he mentioned the new batting coach was helping him.

Edit: Here's a link to a story where he credits hitting coach Bruce Fields for his hot hitting in September.

http://www.cleveland.com/tribe/index.ssf/2011/09/shelley_duncan_makes_the_quali.html

It will be interesting to see if Duncan can keep it going this year and whether Kotchman's .306 last season was really the result of the eye surgery. If it was...then we have a .300 hitting 1st baseman who has the best fielding percentage of all time for players with over 700 games at first base.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Rocky55 » Wed Feb 15, 2012 7:30 pm

Prosecutor wrote:I had Donald leading off against lefties because of the high OBP and because he's fast getting around the bases. I don't like him hitting 3rd with Asdrubal dropping to 5th. My belief is that young players need to earn their stripes, and it's not good to put too much pressure on them before they're ready. Donald has 428 career at-bats and he's starting out 2012 hitting 3rd? He might hit well there but I'd rather bat him leadoff. Kipnis is not a leadoff hitter and he has even less experience than Donald.

I'm pretty sure we won't be seeing Kipnis leading off with Donald batting 3rd, even if the small sample numbers put up by those guys justify those positions in the order.

If healthy, Grady will hit 25-35 HRs as he has done in the past and as he was on pace to do last year before he hurt himself in May. I'd rather have him hitting 5th behind Santana, who gets on base a lot.

As for Duncan, I'm sure I saw a quote from him last year where he mentioned the new batting coach was helping him.

Edit: Here's a link to a story where he credits hitting coach Bruce Fields for his hot hitting in September.

http://www.cleveland.com/tribe/index.ssf/2011/09/shelley_duncan_makes_the_quali.html

It will be interesting to see if Duncan can keep it going this year and whether Kotchman's .306 last season was really the result of the eye surgery. If it was...then we have a .300 hitting 1st baseman who has the best fielding percentage of all time for players with over 700 games at first base.

Thanks for the link. I remember Duncan making some nice fielding plays last season. Not that he's a great fielder but he seems to catch what he can reach.

I understand why you like Donald leading off but my belief is that young players need to earn their stripes...oh, wait a minute...never mind. :biggrin:

Actually, Kipnis hit 2nd his whole career at ASU, even while slugging over .700. His SB% was pretty high, 27-33 in '09. He's actually sorta like Coco Crisp on roids.

The thing that this whole exercise has revealed to me is that we as a team are pretty well set up to cope with LHP's. All winter there has been a general angst about our failure to sign a RH bat. Right now I'm really not convinced that it was necessary in the 1st place. Desireable maybe, but I think that money or trade assets would be better spent on the rotation. I would have liked to have signed Cespedes just because of his upside & the reasonable contract that he received. Bottom line is that the FO has us set up pretty well going in to Spring Training. Maybe they do know a little bit more about how to run an org on a shoestring than a bunch of message board doofuses(doofii?). Hopefully some of the OF we signed & traded for work out but I still hope that they give Duncan a shot at the starting LF job. I like Brantley & if Duncan's new found success against RHP is a mirage they can still platoon very effectively.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Upper Box Woodchuck » Wed Feb 15, 2012 9:03 pm

I'm not good with batting orders, but here;s my defensive alignment:

C Santana RHP/Marson LHP
1B Kotchman RHP/Santana LHP
2B Kipnis
SS Cabrera
3B Hannahan
RF Choo
CF Brantley
LF Sizemore
DH Hafner RHP/Duncan LHP
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby indianinkslinger » Wed Feb 15, 2012 9:46 pm

Upper Box Woodchuck wrote:I'm not good with batting orders, but here;s my defensive alignment:

C Santana RHP/Marson LHP
1B Kotchman RHP/Santana LHP
2B Kipnis
SS Cabrera
3B Hannahan
RF Choo
CF Brantley
LF Sizemore
DH Hafner RHP/Duncan LHP

I think I would add Donald as a utility DB at several positions in the lineup against LHP and consider Cunnningham as a designated OF against LHP if he is the one to make the team from the acquisitions. I question whether Sizemore would accept LF if he feels he is healthy enough to play. Nicely thought out list IMO and better for the team than Sizemore. :good:
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Upper Box Woodchuck » Wed Feb 15, 2012 9:52 pm

indianinkslinger wrote:
Upper Box Woodchuck wrote:I'm not good with batting orders, but here;s my defensive alignment:

C Santana RHP/Marson LHP
1B Kotchman RHP/Santana LHP
2B Kipnis
SS Cabrera
3B Hannahan
RF Choo
CF Brantley
LF Sizemore
DH Hafner RHP/Duncan LHP

I think I would add Donald as a utility DB at several positions in the lineup against LHP and consider Cunnningham as a designated OF against LHP if he is the one to make the team from the acquisitions. I question whether Sizemore would accept LF if he feels he is healthy enough to play. Nicely thought out list IMO and better for the team than Sizemore. :good:


Thanks for the feedback. I just don't know how effective/durable Sizemore would be at CF given all of his injuries. A corner spot seems more appropriate.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Prosecutor » Thu Feb 16, 2012 10:00 am

I understand why you like Donald leading off but my belief is that young players need to earn their stripes...oh, wait a minute...never mind.


Yeah, I know, it's contradictory, and I'd prefer not to have him leading off. But my whole Brantley theory is based on the idea that he is not a natural leadoff hitter and the Indians are retarding his career development by forcing him to be a ground ball slap hitter who tries to lead the league in walks. They would be better off just letting him hit 7th and be aggressive at the plate. He's hit over .300 each of the last two years with runners on base, but his OBP leading off an inning has been abysmal.

So who leads off against RHP? Donald doesn't have many ML at-bats, but he's 27 years old and had an OBP over .400 against LHP last year. He's not a kid anymore. It's time for him to sink or swim.

The other thing is that this may be Grady's last year in Cleveland. If he goes down with another injury, his career as an outfielder is probably over. If he has a great season he can hit the free agent market and we won't be able to afford him. We need to find out what Donald can do as a centerfielder because I don't see a spot for him at SS or 2B.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Hermie13 » Thu Feb 16, 2012 1:04 pm

Upper Box Woodchuck wrote:I'm not good with batting orders, but here;s my defensive alignment:

C Santana RHP/Marson LHP
1B Kotchman RHP/Santana LHP
2B Kipnis
SS Cabrera
3B Hannahan
RF Choo
CF Brantley
LF Sizemore
DH Hafner RHP/Duncan LHP


Not a fan of Brantley and Sizemore switching. It would be better long-term as we need to figure out if Brantley can handle CF full-time, but it makes your defense worse in 2012 as Sizemore is still better there than Brantley.

Do agree with ink that Donald will be in a lot vs lefties (probably CF) and like Cunningham in LF. Could potentially see 4 platoons (1B/C, LF, CF, and DH) to start the year.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby A.Zajac » Fri Feb 24, 2012 6:09 pm

Acta so far as told the media Brantley will leadoff and Santana will be in the four hole.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Chiefroy » Fri Feb 24, 2012 8:27 pm

With Grady likely out for opening day, I'll revise :

1. Brantley
2. Cabrera
3. Choo
4. Santana
5. Hafner
6. Kotchman
7. Kipnis
8. Cunningham or/Spils/Pie/Canzler
9. Hannahan

Less imposing lineup w/o Sizemore, but oh well.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Hermie13 » Fri Feb 24, 2012 8:36 pm

Chiefroy wrote:With Grady likely out for opening day, I'll revise :

1. Brantley
2. Cabrera
3. Choo
4. Santana
5. Hafner
6. Kotchman
7. Kipnis
8. Cunningham or/Spils/Pie/Canzler
9. Hannahan

Less imposing lineup w/o Sizemore, but oh well.


I really think Duncan could/should get a shot before Cunningham against righties in LF now.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby criznit2009 » Fri Feb 24, 2012 9:00 pm

Chiefroy wrote:With Grady likely out for opening day, I'll revise :

1. Brantley
2. Cabrera
3. Choo
4. Santana
5. Hafner
6. Kotchman
7. Kipnis
8. Cunningham or/Spils/Pie/Canzler
9. Hannahan

Less imposing lineup w/o Sizemore, but oh well.


I cant see how Duncan wont be in front of Spils/Pie/Canzler or Cunningham. Barring a terrible spring think Duncan gets the crack at most everyday LF duties if Brantley is your CF. Cunningham definitely has the opportunity to earn regular playing time now.

Also Donald could be get time, regular time in CF or 3B. I personally don't think it is a lock Hanny as the 3B if Chiz has a monster spring I want him on my opening day roster - if he clearly needs work I don't. Donald is the mystery man now if he is hitting well I think they make every effort to squeeze him in to the line 50%+ of the time. 3B or CF.

My line-up(s)

Hopefully Donald can play ML CF. I think he can.

1. Brantley - LF or CF
2. Cabrera - SS
3. Choo/Hafner (hot bat) RF/DH
4. Santana - C
5. Hafner/Choo - DH/RF - Duncan may end up here..... A LOT.
6. Duncan/Kotchman/Hafner - LF/1B
7. Kotchman/Duncan/Cunningham/Donald - 1B/OF/3B
8. Kipnis - 2B
9. Donald/Hanny/Chiz - CF/3B/2B anywhere really in the IF.

Kipnis is poised to move up fast and could start the year in the 2 hole even. He prolly is moved around to best utilize his production and (IMO) his bat definitely looks like it could be perfect in the 2 hole at the ML level - wait and see. Donald could end up in a number of spots as well. Only thing I think is "for sure" is both Hanny and Chiz (if he makes the team - at least to start the year :) hit in the lower/lower part of the order.

Also it remains to be seen if Brantley is a ML level lead-off hitter. Like Acta I start him there but he will have to do much better then he did last year to stay there. Likely candidates to replace him if it comes to that.... Acab, Kipnis, Donald and might as well through Choo in there for good measure.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Chiefroy » Sat Feb 25, 2012 9:27 am

Chiefroy wrote:With Grady likely out for opening day, I'll revise :

1. Brantley
2. Cabrera
3. Choo
4. Santana
5. Hafner
6. Kotchman
7. Kipnis
8. Cunningham or/Spils/Pie/Canzler
9. Hannahan

Less imposing lineup w/o Sizemore, but oh well.


I'll admit I did this l/u a little hurriedly....forgot about my man Duncan! Scratch Cunningham and put Shelly at 6 or 7. Be interesting to see if Donald can handle CF/LF....could be an everyday OF now, with Brantley benched vs lefties. With Donald, Duncan, and Cunningham as righthanded OF options, I can't help but wonder if Sizemore being out doesn't help Chisenhall's chances of making the team. We might need Chiz's offensive potential vs righties.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Prosecutor » Sat Feb 25, 2012 9:53 am

Sheldon Ocker says Donald is no longer in the picture as an outfielder.

Tribe operatives talked about Donald learning to play the outfield in addition to second, third and short, but apparently that plan no longer is a priority.

“That won’t be a reason why he makes it,” Acta said. “But we might give him a few innings out there before the end of camp.”


Considering that Donald hit .377 against LHP last year with a staggering .424 OBP, you would think they would find a way to get his bat into the lineup against LHP. My guess is he will start against LHP either at 3rd, 2nd, or SS, depending on who could use a day off.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Pork Chop Pough » Sat Feb 25, 2012 11:27 am

Just throwing this out there... what if LaPorta has a monster March? Does left field again become a viable option?
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby A.Zajac » Mon Feb 27, 2012 6:14 pm

Manny Acta named chunk of projected lineup: 1. Brantley 2. ACab 3. Choo 4. Santana 5. Hafner 6. Kotchman 7. Kipnis....
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Magneticnorth451 » Tue Feb 28, 2012 11:00 am

Pork Chop Pough wrote:Just throwing this out there... what if LaPorta has a monster March? Does left field again become a viable option?


I believe Jordan Bastian said that even if LaPorta has a monster Spring Training, the Indians are mainly concerned with his approach at the plate, and if that doesn't improve then he's going to be ticketed for AAA. LF is also an option for him, too.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Hermie13 » Tue Feb 28, 2012 1:24 pm

A.Zajac wrote:Manny Acta named chunk of projected lineup: 1. Brantley 2. ACab 3. Choo 4. Santana 5. Hafner 6. Kotchman 7. Kipnis....


Not surprising, though still not a fan of arguably your 2nd best OBP guy hitting 6th.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby GeronimoSon » Tue Feb 28, 2012 3:37 pm

Hermie13 wrote:
A.Zajac wrote:Manny Acta named chunk of projected lineup: 1. Brantley 2. ACab 3. Choo 4. Santana 5. Hafner 6. Kotchman 7. Kipnis....


Not surprising, though still not a fan of arguably your 2nd best OBP guy hitting 6th.


Manny Acta might consider a lineup against LHSPs of:

Jason Donald 3B
Kotchman 1B
Droobs SS
Santana DH
Choo RF
Duncan LF
Kipnis 2B
Marson C
Brantley CF/Other OF'er (Cunningham?)

Getting the highest OBP guys at the top of the lineup like Hermie suggests... Against RHSP's..IDK if Kotchman in the second spot would be an advantage (OBP skills) or a detriment (not exactly nimble with the feet or bat)...
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby indianinkslinger » Tue Feb 28, 2012 4:11 pm

Hermie13 wrote:
A.Zajac wrote:Manny Acta named chunk of projected lineup: 1. Brantley 2. ACab 3. Choo 4. Santana 5. Hafner 6. Kotchman 7. Kipnis....


Not surprising, though still not a fan of arguably your 2nd best OBP guy hitting 6th.

Not too sure that the lineup will be all that regular throughout and I think it is difficult to set a lineup when you don't include the LF and 3B. I think most everyone assumes Hannahan will bat 9th if he wins 3B but there are lots of options to replace Sizemore in the OF, including Duncan who I do not see hitting 8th. Acta seems to be grouping both speed groups and the slow guys together. There is no allowance for platoons either and I see some natural position and defensive switches. Maybe just being old fashioned but Acta might be too.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Prosecutor » Wed Feb 29, 2012 9:29 am

From Hoynsies' column today:

Acta said center fielder Grady Sizemore is still undergoing tests on his strained back. The Indians announced last week that the injury will likely put Sizemore on the disabled list for opening day.

"We're very concerned about Grady," said Acta.


So he strained his back about three weeks ago and they don't expect him to be ready for opening day, which is five weeks off. Doing the math, he put himself out for at least two months by fielding a ground ball during a workout. Oh, and they're "very concerned". No kidding.

This is not looking good at all. Did I mention he can't continue rehabbing his knee while his back is screwed up?

I feel bad for Grady. The guy played the game at full throttle 162 times a year and as a result it looks like his career is essentially over at age 29. What a shame. Apparently he can't even shag flies in the outfield without incurring a major setback.

The left field and 5th starter battles will be very interesting with a lot of fairly equal candidates for both positions. I'd like to see somebody do what Casey Blake did and hit so well in ST that they were forced to give him the job. As for the 5th starter, I think Gomez is the guy but I'd like to see David Huff finally put it together just so I can watch a lefty every five games.

I'm not going to miss watching Carmona struggle through five innings throwing 100 pitches, of which about 60 of them are foul balls into the dirt.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby daingean » Wed Feb 29, 2012 11:16 am

Prosecutor wrote:I'm not going to miss watching Carmona struggle through five innings throwing 100 pitches, of which about 60 of them are foul balls into the dirt.


Let me introduce you to Derek Lowe (that's what my Braves fans would say after watching him struggle last year). All kidding aside, I think Lowe will have a bounce back year but at his age I'm not counting on it.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby GeronimoSon » Wed Feb 29, 2012 11:24 am

Yes.. having a lefty (Huff) in the rotation does bring some balance.. having two lefties (Huff and Barnes?) makes it the staff even more balanced.. having three lefties (Huff, Barnes and changing long reliever Nick Hagadone back to starting) would be amazing.. alas.. probably not this year. Probably not ever.

Yes.. it is sad that Grady has experienced back issues that is preventing him from being prepared to open the season. While not knowing if the back issue is as serious as Hoynes is alluding to (how can anyone believe anything he writes?), the last information from the Indians was that they were going to remain optimistic and err on the side of caution with Grady for the short term. They further indicated that Grady was a week to ten days behind the rest of the club as it prepares for the start of the regular season against the Toronto Blue Jays on April 5th at Progressive Field. Here's hoping Grady is good to go for the road series against the Mariners or A's or the start of the second home stand against the division team he's had the most success against, the Royals.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby Hermie13 » Wed Feb 29, 2012 1:37 pm

GeronimoSon wrote:
Hermie13 wrote:
A.Zajac wrote:Manny Acta named chunk of projected lineup: 1. Brantley 2. ACab 3. Choo 4. Santana 5. Hafner 6. Kotchman 7. Kipnis....


Not surprising, though still not a fan of arguably your 2nd best OBP guy hitting 6th.


Manny Acta might consider a lineup against LHSPs of:

Jason Donald 3B
Kotchman 1B
Droobs SS
Santana DH
Choo RF
Duncan LF
Kipnis 2B
Marson C
Brantley CF/Other OF'er (Cunningham?)

Getting the highest OBP guys at the top of the lineup like Hermie suggests... Against RHSP's..IDK if Kotchman in the second spot would be an advantage (OBP skills) or a detriment (not exactly nimble with the feet or bat)...


Not sure why Hannahan would sit vs lefties when he was one of our best hitters against them last year...plus gives you better defense at 3B. Donald at the top makes sense to me, but in CF.
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Re: What's your Opening Day lineup?

Postby GeronimoSon » Wed Feb 29, 2012 5:17 pm

Hermie13 wrote:
GeronimoSon wrote:
Hermie13 wrote:
A.Zajac wrote:Manny Acta named chunk of projected lineup: 1. Brantley 2. ACab 3. Choo 4. Santana 5. Hafner 6. Kotchman 7. Kipnis....


Not surprising, though still not a fan of arguably your 2nd best OBP guy hitting 6th.


Manny Acta might consider a lineup against LHSPs of:

Jason Donald 3B
Kotchman 1B
Droobs SS
Santana DH
Choo RF
Duncan LF
Kipnis 2B
Marson C
Brantley CF/Other OF'er (Cunningham?)

Getting the highest OBP guys at the top of the lineup like Hermie suggests... Against RHSP's..IDK if Kotchman in the second spot would be an advantage (OBP skills) or a detriment (not exactly nimble with the feet or bat)...


Not sure why Hannahan would sit vs lefties when he was one of our best hitters against them last year...plus gives you better defense at 3B. Donald at the top makes sense to me, but in CF.
I'd go with that change..
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