Scott Hasse contributed a real-world story in the book about how his project automated deployments with WAS using wsadmin and Jython. The intent of the story is to encourage folks to look under the hood of their server for automation hooks, and use 'em. :-)
In terms of deploying web applications, I used Tomcat as the example in the book. It supports hot deployment and provides Ant tasks that make automation quite easy.
Mike [ September 22, 2004: Message edited by: Mike Clark ]
Mike Clark<br />Author of <a href="http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0974514039/ref=jranch-20" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Pragmatic Project Automation</a>