I totally have faith in DVH, I am just curious.......................

…and hope you folks who know a lot more about baseball than I can “splain it to this Lucy.” Franklin is doing a great job getting on base. I wonder why they don’t move him to leadoff and shift everyone down one slot. Looks like that would get him at least one more bat per game. Sounds like a good thing to me. Everyone would be batting in the same “order” they do now, but Franklin would be getting more “at-bats.”

I suspect that how he hits at #9 may not be the same as how he will hit at leadoff where you don’t have the benefit of 8 “at bats” to study and wear down the pitcher. Or maybe giving up effectiveness early in the lineup and moving it to later helps to balance your power. Spacing weaker and stronger batters out evenly works better than “putting all of your eggs in one basket” so to speak. I suspect all of that but would not be surprised if there was a lot more to it than meets my ignorant eye.

Thanks in advance for any elucidation that can be provided. (Here is some help for any Aggies who might be lurking: https://www.dictionary.com/browse/elucidation)

Van Horn seems to like having a 9-hole hitter who resembles a leadoff man. Remember Jax Biggers hit ninth a lot last year. Biggers wasn’t a great hitter (.280) but he drew a lot of walks and was a tough out. He took a lot of pitches. That’s key when the top of the lineup is on deck. Even if you don’t get a hit, making a pitcher throw seven or eight pitches can be of great value for the hitter standing on deck, especially when that hitter is Casey Martin.

Franklin is a lot like Biggers. He is batting .400 right now, but I think that average is going to fall considerably over the next few weekends as the pitching improves. But Franklin often gets deep into counts and draws walks. The combination of him batting before Martin has been really effective this season, so I don’t think you’ll see it change anytime soon. Yes, he would get an extra at-bat potentially by moving him up in the order, but it might take away RBI chances for the best hitters, too.


Franklin is doing a great job getting on base.

[/quote]It’s a good observation and fine question. I’ve had a similar thought on why switch hitting Ezell is batting third, rather than 4th? Although, it does seem to be working quite well.

Matt? All of that is true about Franklin and would be true one more time per game if he started working his magic in front of Martin right away instead of in the 2nd or 3rd inning. I think most of my question still stands. DVH likes it that way is good enough for me but regarding the rest of the explanation…I’m not so sure.

Cleanup spot isn’t what it was. Modern thinking is you want to get your best people more ABs. The #3 guy is going to get more ABs than your #4 guy, and will also get more ABs with runners on (if you go 1-2-3 in the first, there’s no way #4 gets his first AB with traffic in front of him, for instance).

I guess what I’m saying is that Christian Franklin has some leadoff qualities that are good in the 9-hole, but I don’t think he gets on base consistently enough to be a leadoff hitter.

Just going to reinforce I agree:

  1. best hitters get the most ABs
  2. 9-hole allows top of the order to see a lot of pitches

And, if the 9-hole takes a lot of pitches the pitcher is worn down a bit when they see #1 and #2.