For years now we've been hearing some of the brightest minds in the game tell us that an "optimized" lineup would be the most efficient.
My understanding of this is that by running simulations with hitters in different positions and combinations, the math tells us which batting order produces the most runs.
Maybe it's just a limited understanding on my part, but I do not see how simply moving groups of stats (a player) around in different positions is any kind of an accurate representation of what his performance would be.
Do you think Votto would take as many walks hitting leadoff? I certainly don't. He'd be pitched differently, far fewer pitch arounds, IMO.
The idea that everyone would be pitched to in the same way in a different place in the order seems very specious to me. Wouldn't that variable alone be enough to cast doubt on the accuracy of the sim?