deployed: March 2007
This enhancement featured vast improvements to the Computer Manager's strategic capabilities so that it makes much more intelligent decisions when it comes to position-player substitutions. It is still far from perfect - there is no such thing as a "perfect" computer manager - but I'm sure you'll agree that it makes much better moves than it used to.
Finding smart replacements for injured or empty slots in your starting lineup
The new Lineups screen, which introduces Depth Charts, lets you assign up to 2 backups for each fielding position in your default lineups, so that you have much more control over who starts when any of your regulars gets injured. However, in the case that you don't set your backups, or even your starters, the Computer Manager will choose the best overall players to fill in for injured or empty slots. When judging overall worth, it will consider both a player's expected offense versus the opposing starting pitcher, and defensive ability. In addition, it will also find the optimal fielding configuration including your healthy starters, moving guys around the diamond if necessary.
Oh, and it will make a more reasonable batting order with the starters it ultimately settles on, if you have significant gaps.
Subbing for injured or subbed-out players in-game
This is much more important because the Lineup Depth Charts do not handle these cases. Again, similar to above it will fill in for players that have been injured or pinch-hit/pinch-run for using the best overall replacement, and move guys around the diamond to find the optimal defense.
Note that the logic of which PH or PR to use originally has not been changed - only the logic of who subsequently REPLACES the PH or PR.
Picking smart defensive replacements for players you've marked as "remove for def. sub with lead"
First of all, I've figured out that when you check a guy to "remove for def. sub with lead", that means it will ALWAYS take him out in the 8th inning or later and you've got ANY lead. It used to do a decent job picking the best defensive replacement for each guy you've checked. But the new logic improvements will, again, also shift your lineup around the diamond to find the best defensive configuration.