Braves Have Plenty of Lineup Choices with DH in Shortened 2020 Season

With the DH coming to the National League full-time for the first time in the history of the game, the Atlanta Braves will have plenty of lineup decisions to make.

One of the biggest detriments to the DH is that it takes a lot of strategy out of the game. And while that’s true, it does take a lot of in-game strategies away, the Atlanta Braves will have a lot of strategic lineup options before the game starts.

It’s never a bad thing to have a lot of players you want to get in your lineup, it just means your team is deep.

During the first spring training, both Austin Riley and Johan Camargo were hitting the ball well and we were trying to figure out how both would make the lineup.

With a 30-man roster to start the 2020 season that answer has become obvious.

Now the only question is how to those two, along with Nick Markakis and Adam Duvall, get enough at-bats?

 

Without a DH this would likely have been the Braves Opening Day lineup:

Acuna

Albies

Freeman

Ozuna

d’Arnaud

Camargo

Swanson

Inciarte

Pitcher’s Spot

 

That leaves Flowers, Adeiny Hechavarria, Duvall, Markakis, and now Riley on the bench.

Now that we know the Braves will be forced to used the DH in 2020 it opens up plenty of lineup options.

 

This could be the lineup against right-handed pitchers:

Acuna

Albies

Freeman

Ozuna

d’Arnaud

DH – Markakis

Camargo

Swanson

Inciarte

 

And this could be the lineup against left-handed pitchers

Acuna

Albies

Freeman

Ozuna

d’Arnaud

Duvall

DH – Riley

Camargo

Swanson

 

You could also give Ozuna a rest against righties and put Markakis in the outfield as you obviously face a lot more righties than you do lefties.

Another thing to keep in mind, it’s very possible teams limit the number of innings their pitchers throw early in the season. And with 30-man rosters to begin the year teams could very well play matchups throughout the game.

But keep in mind, the three-batter rule for pitchers is still in effect this season. So any reliever brought into the game has to face at least three pitchers before he can be removed unless he gets the third out of the inning first.

That’s why it could also be very wise to stagger your lefties and righties in the lineup in spite of who the starter is because that starter might not be around long at the start of the season.

Next: How to properly enjoy 2020 season

I think the Braves are in a good position because of the depth they have in their lineup, but how Brian Snitker makes up the lineup each day will be something to keep an eye on.