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Today's Astros Optimal Lineup Analysis- 9/1/23

In my recent article describing the optimal Astros lineup, I described that every night might have a different answer depending on if the SP was RH or LH and what their dominant pitch types were.

I had a follower on social media tell me. "Your charts have won me a lot of money." That is not why I put them together but clearly it may help you.

If you use it for that purpose, at least support the site at Patreon.

So today, let's do the quick application of that thought process. Let's compare the optimal Astros lineup with the choices Dusty Baker has made today.

Today's pitcher is Carlos Rodon of the Yankees. His pitch mix this year has been.

Rodon is one of those pitchers I described in the optimal Astros lineup article as hard to classify in my labels of dominant pitch type. The Astros will want to dig into the pitch to LHH/RHH data. Rodon's slider is by far his most dominant pitch that he throws 30% of the time. For our purposes today I will label Rodon a LH Breaking dominant pitcher, but I am going to define optimal based on the table at the bottom - the overall xwOBA vs. Rodon's pitch mix. The optimal lineup would be.

The lineup choices are going to be more challenging since there are several good options every night.


This is the lineup Dusty is rolling out.

As shown in the Rodon data above, his slider is really a key. Will the Astros work Rodon into Fastball counts? Since, this team is GREAT hitting fastballs that is probably the key.

My other thoughts on today's lineup:

  • A Slider dominant pitcher is a challenge. The lineup here reflects that- minus 0.5

  • Has Abreu fixed his issues vs. sliders and changeups? MONITOR THIS TONIGHT. Batting Abreu 5th tells me the Astros think they fixed him.- until he has proven it I think it's a minus 1 for this start

  • Meyers need to play some and finding him playing time now is hard. Given Rodon only throws 3% changeups, I get it. I think it is still too big of a gap vs. McCormick to justify- minus 1

  • Oddly the Offense mat NEED Maldy tonight

  • My Optimal lineup projects to a 0.353 xwOBA or 5.7 runs per game. Dusty's lineup is also a meh 0.345 xwOBA or 5.5 runs per game. I will deduct 0.25 just for my lineup projecting to be better. 0.2 runs per game is pretty significant to choose to not go after.

Overall, I would rate this lineup a 7.25. Overall, this may be a low score for Astros vs. LHP.

Who will RAKE for the Astros tonight? Tucker

Who might struggle? Meyers is most likely but not too bad.

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Here is the lineup vs. Rodon's pitch mix.


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