Originally Posted by Tadasimha
They should bat Votto at lead-off. Phillips has been a better hitter in the 3rd or 4th spot than leading off for the past several seasons. Votto is an on-base machine and hitting doubles the way he does from the lead-off spot would put a runner in scoring position immediately.
Let Cozart bat 2nd (he hit 100 points higher from that spot than from leadoff) then follow with Bruce, Phillips, Frazier, LF, CF (whomever that is), Hannigan/Mes, pitcher.
Another advantage of moving Votto up is that the Reds wouldn't be at a disadvantage negotiating a trade or signing a FA since what they need (a left handed outfielder with high OBP) wouldn't be as specific.
I'm told that ultimately batting order doesn't matter that much -- as long as your best hitters are somewhere at the top, you are doing something right, which is why Dusty's lineups are sometimes so frustrating. I think batting Joey leadoff would make sense given his propensity for getting on-base. Certainly, the version of Votto we saw post-knee this season could be a dynamite leadoff hitter. Think Tony Gwynn.
But if we get the Joey we all know and love -- the one with the 1.000+ OPS, the doubles machine who hits 30 HR by accident with his "process swing" -- then I think leadoff is a mistake. He's the guy you want hitting with other people on the basepaths; that's how you maximize the value of his XBH.