Dan Uggla is a better baserunner than he's given credit for. He is always hustling. If he is hitting leadoff he's not going to clog the bases and he's going to get more fastballs than he will hitting 7th. Why? Because pitchers will not want to risk walking him to set the stage for Heyward, Justin, Freeman and BJ. That's just screaming big inning. If he gets more fastballs to hit his contact rate will increase. Why? As Bobby Cox once said "throw a guy enough fastballs and they'll time a jet". In other words if you see the same pitch enough times you'll eventually hit it. One of the reasons he saw hardly any fastballs once he got moved down in the order was because pitchers didn't care if they walked him because they didn't fear the 8th spot or the pitcher's spot. So in those very rare times that he did get a fastball he would often times completely swing through it because he his swing was completely screwed up because he saw so few of them. You can hit in the cage until you're blue in the face but it's not the same as stepping in the box against a real pitcher throwing 95
Completely agree. We should at least TRY Uggla at the top.
I'm pretty fearful of throwing Simmons in there. He did well enough last year, but hitting atop the order is tough. Worried it may be too much too fast for him.