Last year Dusty routinely and stubbornly refused to address the leadoff problem. This year he is doing more of the same. but what is it costing the Cubs? Some people will tell you that lineups don't matter and that the difference between lineups would only amount to a few runs over a season but is that really true?

Let us look into it using the 2005 data.

In 2005 the #1 had this line:

For starters lets just focus in on scenarios with no outs. The league (and that is including the Cubs leadoff hitter) league had this line for the #1 man locked into Cubs playing time. Meaning the ratios stay the same but instead of viewing it with thousands and thousands of at bats it is locked into Cubs #1 PA totals so that we can easily compare homers, doubles, and so forth.

NL-2005-#1 hitter

Now then simply having a league average #1 hitter would have added the Cubs 12 extra hits for 16 total bases. Plus they would have walked 2 more times as well. They do all that plus give up 13 fewer outs. Finding a league average #1 hitter (possibly Murton? or just not sitting back and actually going out and getting somebody) would have resulted in 13 more favorable situations over the season, and this was just for the #1 hitter batting with no outs. If we then assume that all the bases were empty in these plate appearances the league average hitter was 10 runs better then the Cubs leadoff hitter just in no outs situations. No the men on situation scenario isn't totally true, Cubs leadoff hitters came to bat 46 times with men on base and no outs. Fortunately for the study they didn't hit any homers with men on base which would lead to the greatest aleration of numbers. But in going the other way a better leadoff hitter with the men on base situation could have done better then just 10 runs.

So already in less then half the #1 plate appearances we have found 10 runs lost by Dusty's stubborn refusal to play somebody besides a blackhole there.

Now then doing this for 1 out results in the average leadoff hitter scoring 2 more runs then the Cubs #1 hitter.

For 2 outs it is the league average is 5 runs better. Add it all up and the average #1 hitter is at least 17 runs better then what the Cubs had last year.

If the Cubs could have found a .282/.342/.406 hitter or better for the #1 spot they would have gained at least 17 runs last year. I would personally add about 8 more runs and say the Cubs #1 hitter cost them about 25 runs last year due to their outs and inability to get on base in front of Derrek Lee.

Let us look into it using the 2005 data.

In 2005 the #1 had this line:

Code:

AB Hits TB RBI HR 2B Triples PA BB SH AVG OBP SLG SF O outs 306 75 111 10 7 15 0 338 24 8 0.245 0.293 0.363 0 1 out 181 48 70 19 4 8 1 199 16 2 0.265 0.318 0.387 2 2 outs 202 46 66 1 5 1 217 15 0 0.228 0.281 0.327 0 689 169 247 29 12 28 2 754 55 10 0.245 0.296 0.358 2

NL-2005-#1 hitter

Code:

Leage#1 AB Hits TB RBI HR 2B Triples PA BB SH AVG OBP SLG SF outs singles 0 outs 304 86 127 6 15 3 338 26 5 0.284 0.332 0.417 3 226 62

So already in less then half the #1 plate appearances we have found 10 runs lost by Dusty's stubborn refusal to play somebody besides a blackhole there.

Now then doing this for 1 out results in the average leadoff hitter scoring 2 more runs then the Cubs #1 hitter.

For 2 outs it is the league average is 5 runs better. Add it all up and the average #1 hitter is at least 17 runs better then what the Cubs had last year.

If the Cubs could have found a .282/.342/.406 hitter or better for the #1 spot they would have gained at least 17 runs last year. I would personally add about 8 more runs and say the Cubs #1 hitter cost them about 25 runs last year due to their outs and inability to get on base in front of Derrek Lee.

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