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Just a Thought

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From Baseball Prospectus

The biggest news out of the Brewers camp recently was Ned Yost's revelation that catcher Jason Kendall may bat ninth, with the pitcher taking the eighth slot. On Friday, Yost said

"We've done studies on this. It's not just that we come up one day and say, 'You know, Jason Kendall's gonna hit ninth.' You've had a lot of smart people looking at it and crunching numbers and seeing if, numbers-wise, it made sense."

Those familiar with this discussion will no doubt know that the authors of The Book found that by batting the pitcher eighth, teams could realize an increase of around two runs, and by totally optimizing their lineups a maximum of 15 runs--equivalent to a win and a half--over the course of a season. At first that former result may seem counterintuitive. However, the reason for the small improvement is that although inferior-hitting pitchers will be given more plate appearances in the eighth slot, this will be offset by the fact that a regular hitter in the ninth hole will result in more  opportunities for the top of the lineup, especially the third-place hitter.

So now we have two major league teams (Brewers & Cardinals) who are looking into using the 8 hole for the pitcher. If the Dodger go forward and use Juan Pierre as the everyday Left fielder, they should also look into this. He would be a decent fit for a nine hitter as he would get the fewest at bats on the team but could still use his speed when he gets on base 200 odds times this season. I wonder if Xei would run his lineup simulator and see how many runs are created over a season with Juan Pierre being the nine hitter and using Brad Penny as the pitcher as opposed to having Juan Pierre leading off or batting 2nd or batting 8th?