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 Post subject: Catchers in the Heart of the Order
PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 12:45 pm 
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I think when this team becomes a good team down the road, Ryan Doumit will be batting in the 6 or 7 hole. I don't think there's a lot of history of winning teams with their catcher hitting 3, 4, or 5. Johnny Bench and Mike Piazza are about the only two I could think of. He is only going to play 120 games anyway, and it disrupts the line up for the other 42. I don't think they should count on him for that. He's wearing down pretty good right now, too.


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 Post subject: Re: Catchers in the Heart of the Order
PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2008 7:47 pm 
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doug frobel wrote:
I think when this team becomes a good team down the road, Ryan Doumit will be batting in the 6 or 7 hole. I don't think there's a lot of history of winning teams with their catcher hitting 3, 4, or 5. Johnny Bench and Mike Piazza are about the only two I could think of. He is only going to play 120 games anyway, and it disrupts the line up for the other 42. I don't think they should count on him for that. He's wearing down pretty good right now, too.

You've got that a bit backwards. The reason that you can't think of many winning teams that batted their catchers in the middle of the order is because a catcher who can hit well enough to bat in the middle of the order is an extremely rare thing.

Just looking at World Series teams over the last 10 years, Jorge Posada batted 5th quite a bit of the time. The 2003 Marlins and 2006 Tigers batted Pudge third.

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 Post subject: Re: Catchers in the Heart of the Order
PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 9:36 am 
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I wondered about Pudge. I thought he was either 2nd or 6th, but you're probably right. I also thought Posada hit 6th.


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 Post subject: Re: Catchers in the Heart of the Order
PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 9:49 am 
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doug frobel wrote:
I wondered about Pudge. I thought he was either 2nd or 6th, but you're probably right. I also thought Posada hit 6th.

On any other team Posada would have hit 3rd or 4th.

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 Post subject: Re: Catchers in the Heart of the Order
PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 9:59 am 
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sisyphus wrote:
doug frobel wrote:
I think when this team becomes a good team down the road, Ryan Doumit will be batting in the 6 or 7 hole. I don't think there's a lot of history of winning teams with their catcher hitting 3, 4, or 5. Johnny Bench and Mike Piazza are about the only two I could think of. He is only going to play 120 games anyway, and it disrupts the line up for the other 42. I don't think they should count on him for that. He's wearing down pretty good right now, too.

You've got that a bit backwards. The reason that you can't think of many winning teams that batted their catchers in the middle of the order is because a catcher who can hit well enough to bat in the middle of the order is an extremely rare thing.

Just looking at World Series teams over the last 10 years, Jorge Posada batted 5th quite a bit of the time. The 2003 Marlins and 2006 Tigers batted Pudge third.

In addition to Pudge and Posada, the Twins have Joe Mauer hit 3rd regularly, including in their 2006 playoff year. The 2007 Cleveland Indiands had Victor Martinez bat regularly in the heart of the order, usually at 3rd or 4th.

As for "disrupting the lineup," I don't know why you would think that would have an adverse effect on the team. Players generally are not affected by who hits ahead of or behind them.

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 Post subject: Re: Catchers in the Heart of the Order
PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 10:11 am 
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Willton wrote:
In addition to Pudge and Posada, the Twins have Joe Mauer hit 3rd regularly, including in their 2006 playoff year.


Curiously, I've noticed that when Mauer has the day off, the Twins also bat their backup catcher, Mike Redmond, in the 3rd spot. I guess there is something to be said about not disrupting your order, but I can't believe they would do that.


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 Post subject: Re: Catchers in the Heart of the Order
PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 1:23 pm 
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Jim Leyland was big on this. If Cecil Espy was playing for Van Slyke, he batted him third. Espy had no business hitting anything other than 8th.

I don't know that it so much disrupts the lineup. I shouldn't have used that term. I just think that when you depend on that big bat, and he doesn't play one out of every four games, it makes it tough.


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 Post subject: Re: Catchers in the Heart of the Order
PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 1:58 pm 
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I remember Chuck Tanner hitting Matt Alexander leadoff when Omar Moreno had a day off. Alexander had four or five hits in that game if I recall correctly and he never started another game after that (anyone else remember?) I'm thinking Alexander stole thirty bases for Tanner in Oakland, all as a pinch runner!

As for catchers I remember Ted Simmons hitting fourth regularly for the Cardinals in the seventies. Dale Murphy started out as a catcher for the Braves.


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 Post subject: Re: Catchers in the Heart of the Order
PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 2:03 pm 
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doug frobel wrote:
I just think that when you depend on that big bat, and he doesn't play one out of every four games, it makes it tough.

That's a fair concern, but only because is shows the weakness of the rest of the team. I don't think that should mean that Doumit should no longer be batting where he is most effective.

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 Post subject: Re: Catchers in the Heart of the Order
PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 6:14 pm 
doug frobel wrote:
I think when this team becomes a good team down the road, Ryan Doumit will be batting in the 6 or 7 hole. I don't think there's a lot of history of winning teams with their catcher hitting 3, 4, or 5. Johnny Bench and Mike Piazza are about the only two I could think of. He is only going to play 120 games anyway, and it disrupts the line up for the other 42. I don't think they should count on him for that. He's wearing down pretty good right now, too.


I see your point, DF, but honestly I'm not concerned with the position of a 3, 4 or 5 hitter. I think the best hitters on your team should go in those spots ... who cares where they play in the field? I mean, obviously, it's not common for a team's best hitter to be its catcher. But if that's the case and the catcher is putting up slugging first baseman-like numbers, who cares?


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 Post subject: Re: Catchers in the Heart of the Order
PostPosted: Thu Sep 04, 2008 9:31 pm 
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BBF wrote:
Willton wrote:
In addition to Pudge and Posada, the Twins have Joe Mauer hit 3rd regularly, including in their 2006 playoff year.


Curiously, I've noticed that when Mauer has the day off, the Twins also bat their backup catcher, Mike Redmond, in the 3rd spot. I guess there is something to be said about not disrupting your order, but I can't believe they would do that.

I used to want to strangle Jim Leyland for doing that.

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