We spent some time this offseason discussing optimal lineup construction, ultimately realizing that the difference between the best and worst lineups is only a few runs per season. I don't expect a major league manager like Jerry Manuel to construct a lineup based on "The Book", but the fact that David Wright continues to bat 5th is completely outrageous. This is a player who has been the Mets' best or second best hitter since 2004 (his rookie season). He's currently leading the National League in batting average and on-base percentage. Why would any sane individual not try to maximize the plate appearances for this beast of a hitter? Here are the total plate appearances per spot in the order for Mets hitters last season:
Let me reiterate: Wright leads the league in on-base percentage and is batting in a lineup spot that will end up with ~50 fewer plate appearances than the 2 spot over the course of a season. I don't want to hear nonsense about how Wright has better numbers in the 5 spot, or how he changes his approach when batting in other places in the order. Bat him 3rd, 2nd, or heck even 1st. Just not 5th. Between lineup construction, bullpen management, and the non-stop bunting, Manuel is costing this team runs and therefore wins. For a group that has missed the playoffs by a game or 2 each of the last 2 seasons, this is a large issue. Unfortunately, there is only a slim chance it will rectified.