Schreiner: Why Babe Ruth should have hit leadoff

From SABR member Chris Schreiner at Bullpen by Committee on June 2, 2015:

Most baseball fans have a good handle on what type of hitter should in which spot in the batting order. For instance, a speedster should hit leadoff, your big slugger hitting cleanup, etc. Tom Tango, Mitchel Lichtman, and Andy Dolphin in their book “The Book” provided statistical analysis to optimize a batting order. They based their analyses on the number of plate appearances and the frequency of base/out states (e.g. how often the cleanup hitter comes to bat with runners in scoring position).

I won’t go through all the explanation as Tango, Lichtman, and Dolphin did a much better job. If you don’t want to read the original source, Beyond the Box Score did a great job providing an overview and Bluebird Banter went through some of the statistical analysis.

We wanted to see how that analysis would transfer to actual wins and losses. We looked at two scenarios using the greatest leadoff hitter, Rickey Henderson, and the greatest hitter of all-time, Babe Ruth.


Read the full article here:

Originally published: June 3, 2015. Last Updated: June 3, 2015.