From John Fay:

Josh Hamilton was out of the lineup Saturday after hitting .455 with two home runs and five RBI in his previous three starts.

Such is life when you’re trying to play four outfielders.

“It’s a pretty good situation,” Reds manager Jerry Narron said. “I’m not complaining about it, is what I’m trying to say.”

Narron said he’ll try to alleviate the jam by playing Ryan Freel at third base some.

I’m all in favor of playing Hamilton more while he’s playing well, but I’m concerned that fan pressure and Narron’s seemingly being enthralled with Hamilton make me concerned about him staying with him even when he begins to struggle, as I have no doubt that he will. And that “playing the hot hand” idea is difficult to do; how long do you stay with them?

No mention of playing Freel any at 2nd (unless Phillips is hurt) and since neither is playing well, why not play him some at 2B and some at 3B? EE’s offense is more proven than Phillips and, according to most defensive ratings, Phillips defense is overrated by the media. Seems like pretty close to a push to me.

It was reported in another section of the sports that Gonzalez might be back on Monday, but it didn’t sound too definite. So, my guess is it’ll be Castro at SS until he gets back. Playing Phillips at SS and Freel at 2B doesn’t appear to be an option.

So, what’s the best option?

About The Author

I've been a Reds fan since the late '60's, with my luck of being able to attend plenty of games at Riverfront during the BRM era. I was sitting in the Green Seats in the OF when Pete came home in '84 and was in the Red seats when Glenn Braggs reached over the fence in '90 to beat the Pirates. I have had many favorites from Jim Maloney to Johnny Bench, Barry Larkin, Adam Dunn, and Jay Bruce.

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4 Responses

  1. GregD

    If Hamilton can continue to hit righties, how about a Freel/Hamilton platoon in CF? The majority of Freel’s success the past two years has been vs LHP. I heard this (about EE getting more bench time) during yesterday radio broadcast, and I just don’t understand it. Is it reaction to radio talk shows? Is it the not running out a pop-up? Listening to Sunday morning Sports Talk, the people who called in seem ready to give up on EE….AFTER TWO WEEKS! WTF?

    I think a key to the Reds offense the past couple of years is having 4 good OFers capable of starting (Guillen, Wily Mo, etc.) We don’t know if the team has that yet with Hamilton, but if he does turn to be that good, then the team has bench depth and injury insurance. Otherwise, you have guys who are barely PH-worthy thrust into starting roles and getting WAY too many at-bats when players need a day off or get injured.

  2. Justin

    Freel/Hamilton/Griffey in RF and CF would work. keeps Griffey’s ego happy and gets rest needed for the 3.