Re: Optimal lineup
IMO, this simulation assumes that Hannigan (and every other player) is going to produce the same, regardless of where they bat.
IMO, Hannigan's OBP is going to take a hit when he's not batting #8.
The #8 hitter is going to get a few more at bats than the #9 hitter over the course of the season. That advantage outweighs trying to hit the pitcher #8 to get better OBP in the 9 hole for the #1 and #2 hitters. Honestly, the pitcher is the worst hitter in the lineup, his ABs should be minimized.
Cozart hitting 5th and Ludwick hitting 7th (ahead of the pitcher) is just ludicrous. If Cozart ends up being more productive offensively than Ludwick this year, we are probably in serious trouble.
I think there's enough guesswork in the projections used for this simulation that the 11 extra runs produced by their "optimal" lineup is not significant.
Thank you Walt and Bob for going for it in 2012 AND 2013!
Nov. 13, 2007: One of the greatest days in Reds history: John Allen gets the boot!