Let’s indulge in fantasy for a moment. Imagine, if you will, a time when the Red Sox are completely healthy. A time when every player that we hope to see in the everyday lineup actually shows up without the flu, without a broken knuckle, or without a bad big toe. A time when Terry Francona has the ability to really stack things in his favor, if, in fact, he can figure out how to do that. So what is the batting order on that fantastical, fictional, and far-off day? Do you bat Youk at leadoff, since he’s been one of the best in the entire Majors at that spot so far? Or do you put Coco there, since, well, he’s fast, and that’s what you’re supposed to do? Do you continue to bat Jason Varitek as high as Terry has (making us wonder: is Terry high himself?)? Or do you put him at the bottom, risking (boo-hoo!) hurt feelings?
Here’s my ideal lineup for any given day when you don’t have to worry about the opposing pitcher, head-to-head matchups, lefty-righty splits, or all that nonsense. And I didn’t use sabermetrics. Or VORP, or anything else intelligent like that, so take that for what it’s worth. This is simple armchair quarterbacking based on field observations and not much more.
- Youk – how can you not bat the best at a position at that position?
- Loretta – seems like he’s got just terrific bat control, a line drive hitter who moves guys along
- Papi – obvious – he’s insanely productive, why move him?
- Manny – textbook cleanup hitter, though I toyed with moving Youk here, I think he’s that good.
- Coco – here’s the unconventional move – he hits for average, he has speed, he switches, I think he’d be great everyday cover for Manny.
- Lowell – should be hitting higher than 7th, as he is currently.
- Trot/WMP – they would exceed a typical #7’s production
- Tek – ditto for a #8 hitter. Plus he might end up walking more with BB behind him.
- Bathroom Break – can he bat 10th?
Am I nuts? Thoughts?