Final R H E
Chicago Cubs  (8-17)
 2  8  0
Cincinnati Reds  (12-14)
 3  11  0
W: A. Simon (4-1)   L:   J. Samardzija (0-3)   S:  J. Broxton (5)
Box Score   |   Play-by-Play    |    Stats    |    Depth Chart    |    FanGraphs Win Probability

The Good

John Wall had a great game. Oh. Wait. Sorry. Rain delays had me watching more NBA tonight than baseball.

So, Bryan Price takes a look at the weather radar and pulls the trigger in the bottom of the 6th with the rain about to come down again and an official game hanging in the balance. Calls for one Master Christopher Heisey. My boy, Heisey delivers.

Good work, Jonathan Broxton & Sam LeCure, but Logan Ondrusek is already my Knob Creek Player of the Game.

Zack Cozart got a couple of hits tonight. Hope you were up to see it.

The Bad

Just the Cubs.

The Ugly

The Cincinnati weather. You people are lucky I love you. After midnight. On a Tuesday night. The Cubs. Out of bourbon. Child, please.

Not so random thoughts …

Bullpen did yeoman’s work out there with all the delays. That’s one that could have gotten away from them. A good, grind-it-out win.

The Daily Billy:  Didn’t mention Billy Hamilton above because Billy wasn’t GOOD. He was GREAT. Rumor has it that Billy Hamilton has as many dingers as Robinson Cano. Opportunity Cost, yeah? 3 hits. Goes yard. Beautiful belly-flop of a catch. This is the kind of game that makes you think, hey, maybe this can work.

George Grande and Mat Latos sure have a lot of coffee together. And they keep going over the same subjects. What’s up with that? Mat can’t bring himself to shoot a deer??? Wonder what Homer thinks of that.  I think I ‘m done now.

Talk amongst yourselves.

Father. Iowa born, Kentucky raised, NYC finished. I write about baseball. I wonder what Willie Shakespeare would have written had he met Willie Mays. Richard resides in protective custody at an undisclosed location in New Jersey.

Join the conversation! 87 Comments

  1. Heisey’s hit was in the 6th. Not that it makes a difference and I’m betting the bourbon was good while it lasted. Great recap, short and sweep but covered it all.

    • Exactamundo. Thanks.

      • My sympathies about the bourbon, Richard. My favored jar as well. About Billy: evidently it takes more than transcendent speed to steal bases in mlb. I expect that he’ll acquire the rest.

  2. The Cubs: Good for what ails ‘ya.

  3. Great game to attend, besides the weather. Hamilton looking more comfortable, improving. Phillips shouldn’t hit 3rd, bat him 6th. We need another RH power bat, preferably in LF. Heisey looks great at the plate. Simon keeps on pitching well.

  4. “The Daily Billy: Didn’t mention Billy Hamilton above because Billy wasn’t GOOD. He was GREAT. Rumor has it that Billy Hamilton has as many dingers as Robinson Cano. Opportunity Cost, yeah? 3 hits. Goes yard. Beautiful belly-flop of a catch. This is the kind of game that makes you think, hey, maybe this can work.”

    Thanks! And like the saying goes, one step or one day at a time. Reds and Billy rock (even if it was against the lowly Cubs – will still take it – now 2nd place – here we come).

  5. Great game to attend and stick out. One of those games that makes you feel like this team is coming around. Or maybe I had a few too many. Either way, great night at the ballpark, and very happy I got to see Billy’s first career over-the-fence home run. Not sure how many there will be, and hopefully he’s not shooting for them, but boy what a game did he play tonight.

  6. With half of their lineup out, the Brewers beat the Cardinals in St. Louis again. It’s going to be interesting when they come into Cincy. They’re going to slow down at some point.

    • I’m starting to worry that it’s going to be like the 1990 Reds – they’ll be so far in front when they slow down that it’s almost impossible to catch them.

      • Yes, but I don’t need to outrun the bear; I just need to outrun you. Wildcard is better than nothing. Of course, we’ll all be singing our sad songs again the next time the Reds lose.

  7. So Simon is 4-1, and the only loss was 1-0 to the Rays. ERA of 1.6…Cueto at 1.15 with a 2-2 record, having given up a whopping 3 runs in his 2 losses. … If this team could hit with any consistency …

    • Further proof wins and losses mean very little to the effectiveness of a pitcher.

  8. Oh Billy Billy Billy!
    If Bham hits a homer after a rain delay and nobody is there to see it does it make a sound?

  9. and a 1-run W for the Reds, now only 4-9 in that category(4-10 in my book counting the 9th inning GS off Hoover with Reds up 1). Simon very impressive so far. Well beyond any expectations I had. Whip under 1, averaging 6.5 inning per start.

    Go get’em today Reds! Build up some momentum for Brewers.

  10. After tonight Billy has a higher .OBP and .SLG % than BP. That’s both a credit to Billy’s improvement and an indictment of BP’s mediocre offense at the top of the order.

    • I’ll be anxiously awaiting the editorial endorsing moving BP to the nine hole

  11. This is crazy, i know. But, it’s almost as if BP is actively trying to see as few pitches as possible. Maybe, I’m just noticing it now more than ever.

    • I’m noticing it more now, too. I don’t understand swinging at the first pitch when the pitcher has just walked the guy in front of you.

      • I’ll swing at a 1st pitch when the pitcher has just given up a walk. It just needs to be exactly what I’m looking for to go for it. BP has been guessing more than usual and he’s been guessing wrong quite a lot. He knows he’s slumping and he’s trying to swing his way out of it… Just a guess on my part as I haven’t talked to the guy or anything. The Reds need him to snap out of this funk though.

  12. Phillips did get the run in from 3rd in the 1st inning…try not to focus on only the negative things. Did anyone say anything about Votto GIDP with bases loaded in the 8th? I guess I just did.

  13. Broxton has been a pleasant surprise.


  15. I would love to sit and have coffee with George Grande. Sigh.

  16. Couple of thoughts after tonight’s game:

    1) Man do I feel bad for Samardzija. 1.93 ERA on the season, already worth almost 1 WAR, a 50% ground ball rate, and he still can’t get a win… because Stupid Cubs. If he wanted to just walk across the diamond and join up with the Redlegs, I wouldn’t say no.

    2) Brayan Pena has been a great pickup. For the relative peanuts he’s being paid, he’s been a top 30 catcher in his limited sample size. According to FanGraphs (sorted for > 40 PA), he’s been the 30th best catcher by WAR. By BA, he’s the 8th best. That won’t be sustained… but he’s been excellent thus far. (Devin Mesoraco is 1st in both categories…)

  17. 1) Pena has actually been better than top 30. Don’t forget that WAR is essentially a counting stat. Where would the combined stats of Pena and Mesoraco place the Reds catching tandem relative to other team totals? I’m guessing very high.
    2) Nice game for Hamilton but I’d like to see him square to bunt a little less often. He needs to nurture the threat of a bunt, but too many is wasteful. I think more than anything he needs more reps to learn the Votto way – let the balls go, fight off the tough strikes and work more walks, and hit the easy strikes hard. All the fake bunts slow that learning process. Of course, there are many who should learn the Votto way.
    3) Finally, speaking of Votto, I’m not enjoying his slump or Bruce’s for that matter. And don’t kid yourself that he’s not in a slump. All the walks just mean Votto’s slumps aren’t as deep as some, but he’s not driving the ball right now. It was tough watching a K and a GIDP in his only two official at bats last night. If Votto and Bruce hit this team will be very strong. Can’t wait.

  18. True enough it was one game, and the Cubs at that, but I think there are some positives that need to be stated again:

    1. We won the game without major contribution from guys who must produce in order to win games.

    2. Alfredo Simon, who was a scrap heap pickup, has been brilliant.

    3. Our bench, surely a weak spot for many seasons, came through exceptionally.

    4. Billy, Billy, Billy.

    5. We had some patient at bats, got some walks, and hit well against a very good pitcher.

    6. The bullpen held up.

    When you look at a team without a lot of depth, it is essential to find some diamonds in the rough and have someone on your bench make a play or two. As long as the pen doesn’t implode and decent health prevails, I don’t see any reason we aren’t in this for the long haul. Sure wish the Brewers would slow down a little though.

  19. I’m not at all comfortable with our bullpen right now. Hoover with more walks than innings pitched, Ondrusek with twice as many hits as innings pitched, Broxton topping out in the low 90’s, Marshall only available periodically, Parra wobbly. It’s a shame Chapman won’t be around for the Brewers series, we could really use him. Speaking of Brewers, their bullpen guys rack up a ton of strikeouts. Methinks that part of their equation is sustainable, but 3/5 of their rotation are imposters. Another imposter–Khris Davis (1 walk in over 100 at-bats? he’ll come back to Earth).

    • I agree on the bullpen. If Ondrusek could remember how to throw strikes that would go a long way. He looked ok last night for bit.

      I think it’s time to get Jumbo Diaz up for sure though.

  20. Last 10 games:
    BHam .333, 7 runs, 4 rbi
    Votto .235, 3, 1
    Bruce .316, 5, 6
    Phillips .167, 4, 2
    Ludwick .294, 1, 4
    Cozart .229, 3, 5

    Somebodies need to get kicking and it isn’t BHam. Maybe we will see a new Blog Post addressing this?

    • I was going to point out that you left out OBP on your list… but in the last 14 days, only Bruce and Votto have higher OBPs for everyday players. BHam’s OBP for the last two weeks is .360. If he sustains that (or even close to that) for the next 3 months, I’ll shut my mouth and admit I had him pegged as unready for the show and he proved me wrong.

      • Have a look at his Game Log. It’s enlightening. He surely was over matched in the first series of the year but since then has hit .282.

    • You guys in the Billy Hamilton Choir would be more persuasive to a wider range of people if you (a) used better statistics [seriously, batting average and two team-mate dependent stats of runs scored and RBI?], (b) didn’t make utterly unwarranted comparisons to player like Pete Rose and Willy Mays, and (c) didn’t turn every one of Hamilton’s hits into definitive proof that he was a “winner”.

      • Depend on you for those stats and I’ll state the ones I follow,. The unwarranted comparison to Mays is that I recommended that Price give BHam a vote of confidence after his early season struggles, like Leo did with Mays. Gee whiz.

        What did you think of his effort last night, that’s what I’d like to know.

        • The fact that you’d even have to ask that proves how skewed you guys are viewing this “debate.” Everyone is pulling for Hamilton to succeed. He delivered the winning run with a home run – that’s great. I love to see that from lead-off hitters (like Choo hitting 20). But let me ask you this, if that’s what particularly commended Billy’s night, how often do you see that repeated?

          It’s just as wrong to trumpet Hamilton’s arrival based on one game as it is to denounce him based on a single game.

        • It’s ironic because I was seeing a little skewing in your original post. I don’t know, maybe something along the lines of, “Bill had quite a night but if you want to influence folks opinions………………..” instead of “great night but how often can he repeat it” with a slightly dismissive tone.

          Steve, I know you really like the guy but sometimes it is hard for me tell. That’s on me not you. Just curious for your thoughts.

      • Batting average seems a very viable statistic. Saying “better” stats to me seems a bit prideful and sucks the fun right out of a room.

        • It’s viable. Thing is, right next to it, pretty much printed every single place that it’s published, is also the OBP, which is a (trying to avoid using the prideful word ‘better’ here) stat that is more accurate at indicating the offensive impact the player has. I doubt the case for Billy Hamilton is going to be built on RBI for much longer. Although I hope he sure keeps driving them in and hitting home runs.

        • Go to MLB last 10 games log, they do not include or I would have since it seems to be the critical stat. Walks are important but hits are “very” important, just my opinion.

          • It’s not either/or. Hits *are* more important than walks. Both are important, though. You can find the OBP under the top Menu item “Stats” on this page, the first drop down menu item is “Reds Hitting Stats.” Has all the hits and walks there.

        • Think of batting average as pulling all the change out of your pocket and valuing each coin equally. Treating your quarters as if they were pennies might not suck the fun out of the room, but it sure will eventually suck the buying power from your disposable income. Less disposable income means fewer Reds games. Less beer.

          And that’s not fun at all.

        • Steve, thanks for the tip on the Stats. I have not used that feature but will in the future so I can list “easily” OBP, OPS, & Slugging Percentage

      • Oh by the way, when Billy scores 7 with BP and MVP haveing3 rbis between them;means 4 runs scored without aide from the 2 guys behind him. So teammate dependent? To a point, yes. I have a feeling he will be a lot less teammate dependent than most that aren’t HR hitters, if not all.

        • Billy’s ability to score runs when he gets on base is absolutely a unique strength, just like it was for Drew Stubbs (and, unlike for others here, that’s not a derogatory comparison for me). But unless he hits a home run (driving himself in) or steals home or scores on a wild pitch, his runs scored will depend on the success of his teammates.

        • Just wondering how I was able to evaluate a player the first 40 yrs of my life without all these advanced stats. Loved seeing the MANY things Bham did last night to help us win,

        • Probably not very well.

        • Speaking of which; how is that Kolten Wong kid, for the Cardinals, doing that you were so high on?

        • I think you know. There were some people scratching their heads on the demotion. He hit .255/.327/.319 in the first 13 games of the year and then Matheny took the Dusty-esque step of playing him 6 of 12 games and he got ice cold.

          Were you waiting for B-Ham to finally have an OBP higher than a guy the Cards sent down? How fortunate for you that B-Ham had a good day yesterday…

          We’re clearly in small sample size territory for both players, but I feel much more comfortable with Wong’s future than Billy. Billy will undoubtedly have the more spectacular plays, but Wong’s peripheral stats and OBP look pretty darn good still. Still, it doesn’t hurt that the Cards have a good plan B in Mark Ellis. Kudos to the Cards for having a good bench.

          Let’s be honest here though, Hamilton would have been sent down if the Reds had the types of options the Cards do. Schumaker’s return should be interesting…

  21. I’ve nothing against stats, although it was my worst subject in college. Baseball, of course, is a game of stats but as a Reds fan for 70 plus years I’m old fashioned and prefer good chemistry on a winning team. That doesn’t mean everybody has to like each other; that was proved by the Big Red Machine. I think, eventually, Billy Hamilton will provide that winning chemistry for the Reds, but it will take some time and patience for him to mature.

  22. Gve the opic meltdown I am suffereing with here in Indy with my Pacers, I am so glad to see the Reds playing and the ability to work through some key injuries and provide a good source of fun in my otherwise horrible sports world right now. Seeing what BH might become and see other players getting it going is what I need right now. I understand this team has issues, but as I have seen here in Indy, you can have the best talented team in a sport, that doesn’t mean you will win it all.

  23. The thing I love is that we aren’t all complaining about the pitching. Just a couple of middle relievers is all and even that is a bit unwarranted. Just need the bats to heat up a bit is all.

  24. I think both sides of the Hamilton debate have good points, but here’s one to consider—baseball games are broken down into 9 inning segments over the course of a long season. While the counting stats are important to a very strong degree, they don’t specifically address how a player’s contribution affects winning individual games. For example, a player who goes 4-16 in a 3 game series is ony batting .250, not impressive taken by itself. But if those 4 hits were crammed into 1 game, they would have a very high probability of helping your team win on that given day. I think that’s what we’re seeing here—Billy is nearly single handedly winning individual games (by my count, 4 so far) with a combination of his hitting and GAME CHANGING skills on the basepaths. And yet at the same time, he is a neutral or non factor in the others. I think this is also some of the criticism of Votto…..that his counting numbers look great at the end of the year, but in terms of impacting individual games, they don’t so much.

    Does that make sense?

    • Interesting way to look at it. I don’t agree with your count of four, though. It’s one (last night) and that was with a home run, the kind of contribution we shouldn’t hold our collective breath until it’s repeated. Second, the games where he is “non-factor” are not “neutral” – they are negatives because of the opportunity costs of not playing a different person who might get a hit, etc. So it’s not just did Hamilton help in a few games, he does. The second question is, how many one-run games did the Reds lose because their center-fielder and lead-off hitter didn’t do anything? So far, that number is almost surely larger than the first.

      • Plenty of blame to go around for one run losses.

      • Honestly? “Surely larger than the first?” Me and you are on different planets when it comes to Billy Hamilton. It is like speaking totally different languages. Is like when you are headed for divorce and so alienated from each others point of view.

        • You have the right to your own opinion, but not your own facts. The Reds have won 12 games. Until last night, there wasn’t a single game where if you added up Billy’s runs and RBI that it made a difference in an outcome of a game. Example: 1-0 win over Cardinals (Billy 0-4); 12-4 win over Tampa Bay, Billy not responsible for 9 runs; 5-2 win over Pittsburgh, Billy scored and drove in a run, so two runs, but margin of victory was three. Not until last night (with the home run) did Billy make a margin of difference.

          Then, look at just the Reds one-run losses: STL (0-4), STL (0-4), Tampa (0-4), Tampa (0-4), PIT (0-4), PIT (0-3) etc.

          Last year, in the Reds first two wins of the season, Shin-Soo Choo either scored or knocked in enough runs for the margin of victory.

        • And further, even if Billy’s runs and RBIs were to add up to a game winning margin, that doesn’t mean he won those games “single-handedly” – other people have to be on base or drive him in for the most part. And if someone else was playing in his place, presumably they’d get their share of hits (and a bigger share of homers and doubles that can score runs).

        • You can’t just look at the few times Billy Hamilton does something and say, “See, see, look at that he’s contributing” and stop there. You also have to look at the times when he doesn’t do anything and say, for instance, if Chris Heisey had been playing CF and leading off in the first series against the Cardinals, whether he would have had any hits/scored in the two games we lost by one run?

        • Let’s put some meat on them bones:

          Reds 4, Cards 0

          From the recap:

          “However, the nuisance the Cardinals feared Hamilton could be atop Cincinnati’s lineup came to life on Wednesday, as the speedy outfielder tallied more total bases than the entire Cardinals’ offense. That left St. Louis starter Shelby Miller to deal with a constant disruption while getting nary the run support or bailout that Lance Lynn had a night earlier.”
          Key game comment:
          “That’s the first time I’ve seen that,” added Yadier Molina. “He’s so fast. Every time he’s on base he’s going to be dangerous. … Any time you see a guy with that kind of speed, he can change the game.”

          Reds 4, Pirates 0

          “Combining Billy Hamilton’s speed with Pirates starter Francisco Liriano’s wildness enabled the Reds to score an important first-inning run. Liriano walked Hamilton, who then got a fantastic jump to steal second base. A wild pitch to Joey Votto moved Hamilton to third base. After Votto walked, a second wild pitch to Brandon Phillips let Hamilton score without a play at the plate.”

          Reds 4, Cubs 1

          Billy Hamilton broke a scoreless tie with an RBI double in the fifth. Mesoraco led off the inning with a single to left and stole second, just the second steal of his career and first since 2012. With two outs, Hamilton doubled to left-center field and just out of the reach of a diving Junior Lake, scoring Mesoraco.

          Reds 5, Pirates 2

          “The Reds’ three-run go-ahead rally in the fifth at least featured a hit, but was not much cleaner. Morton started it by hitting Devin Mesoraco with a pitch, then walked Santiago and both moved up on Simon’s sacrifice bunt. Billy Hamilton’s single tied it at 2, but two other runs scored without further offense.

          On Hamilton’s steal of second, Stewart’s throw again bounced into the outfield, the error scoring Santiago and sending Hamilton to third. Consecutive walks — intentional to Joey Votto, unintended to Brandon Phillips — loaded the bases before Jay Bruce’s force-play grounder brought in another run and made the score 4-2”.

          Last night

          Sounds to me that Young Billy had a pretty big hand in 5 wins so that leaves 7 wins out. Two of those games BHam didn’t start and 2 others were blowout victories. So in the 8 close games he was actually starting he was a factor in 5 of the wins. Maybe not great but certainly not bad for the young fellows first month as a starter in the Show.

          I, for the life of me, can’t remember 1 game that was lost due to BHam or even had a major hand in losing. I count 4 for Homer Bailey and heck he has only been involved in 5 games. Maybe we can cut the kid a little slack and say he has done a fair job and is improving weekly?

          • Billy Hamilton has “had a hand in” winning seven or eight games. In every winning game, lots of players have “a hand” in winning it, including all the pitchers who suppressed runs from scoring and players that make good defensive plays. It’s a low bar to find five games *twenty six* games into the season where your lead-off hitter and CF had “a hand” in winning the game. The earlier claim was that BH had “single-handedly” won four games. Even allowing for the deliberate exaggeration (no hitter can win a game singlehandedly unless he also pitches), only last night was a game where Hamilton’s runs and RBI (again, not all credit goes to him for this) even added up to the run margin.

            But in terms of losing games – every game that he goes 0-4 he contributes to losing. Every time he makes an out with runners on base, he contributes to losing. It’s because of the opportunity cost of playing him instead of someone else who, you know, might not be hitting .250 something with one home run. That’s not to say that he alone lost the game. Games are lost by a LOT of players. But to ignore the negative effects of the many more bad offensive games he’s had than above average ones is just willful denial.

            But to be clear, I hope he goes 4-for-4 tonight!

          • This is the link to Billy’s Baseball-Reference game log for every game this year. If you look to the far right, there is a column heading WPA which stands for Win Probability Added. Smart people go through every single play of every game and figure out the impact individual players have on specific circumstances, taking into account situations, game score etc. And players earn positive or negative numbers. If you look at his column, you seen lots of negative numbers – those are games where he didn’t hit anything. That’s a negative effect for your team. There was one game, a 1-0 loss against Tampa Bay, where he earned a larger negative contribution than his positive contribution from last night.


      • Now I do believe that a real case could be made that Homer Bailey cost us 4 games. I wouldn’t even try to but he is surely a lot more responsible for any loses than BHam.

        • I’ve provided stats below that show that Hamilton has decreased the overall Reds probability to win games. If you only look at wins, you’re probably not going to see how much he contributed to losses.

          Again, I’m happy for the kid and I hope he gets better, but the facts are the facts.

        • How much has Homer Bailey decreased the Reds chances of a win? He must be more efficient at that than Billy.

        • Homer is at -.93, so yeah, he’s been worse than Billy. The worst has been Hoover so far at -1.40, and Phillips, Cozart, and Pena have all been worse than Billy as far as position players go.

          All of this stuff is pretty easy to find on fangraphs, and is directly related to the fangraphs win probability link that is posted in every Titanic Struggle Recap.

    • This is very smart point. I look at BHam as a HR hitter that doesn’t hit homers. He can score a run by just getting on base with very, very little help; if any help from his teammates. He also has the unique ability to manufacturer (drive) in ruins with the chaos he creates on the base paths without even hitting the ball. For the last several seasons in regards to scoring, the Reds many times were all or nothing. Praying that we continue to see Billy change that dynamic.

      In the end, is it just a small taste of great things to come or is this only going to be the occasional anomaly?

      • I guess I like your enthusiasm for a Reds player, but man, this seems like it’s getting over the top. A HR hitter that doesn’t hit HRs? Really?

        He’s stolen 10 bases and been caught 5 times. He’s hardly turning every single into a triple. He’s scored 12 runs, which ties him for 4th on the team with the catchers, behind Votto, Bruce, and Frazier, all of whom hit actual HRs.

    • It does, except I would put Bruce in there instead of Votto as a great example. Bruce seems to go cold for months on end but always has good numbers at the end of the season. Well put.

    • There is actually a really useful stat that captures exactly what you’re talking about here. While WAR eliminates the context of a game as far as a player’s contributions, so going 4 for 4 in one game and 0 for 4 the next is the same as two for two in both.

      Win Probability Added (WPA) captures the contribution a player makes to winning an individual game by looking at the probability that the team will win before and after every play. And right now, Steve’s guess has the right of it.

      Billy Hamilton is currently at -.59 WPA, and +.3 WAR. So what that means is that his contributions have actually come at net negative times overall. He’s been above replacement level player so far, but overall he’s decreased the Reds chances of winning (probably because he has lead off so many innings and gotten out, and getting the leadoff man on in an inning is the major determining factor of scoring).

      • Of course, this statistic assumes there is a replacement level player ready to take Billy’s place. Some believe Heisey is that or better. I see he has 1 walk all season. Bernadina takes his walks, but the average is pretty bad and the body of work isn’t sufficient.

        • My point about Heisey is that while his counting stats are better, I don’t believe they are sustainable. There’s more than a little evidence that bears that out.

        • ….and that’s before we even factor in defense.

        • I think you’re missing your own point. You said you were interested in looking at how Billy Hamilton had contributed to winning individual games instead of just looking at his overall numbers. This isn’t about who replaces him, it’s about comparing him to himself.

          It turns out that he has been worse at helping the Reds win than he has been at putting up personal statistics. That’s what the numbers I posted show.

    • I certainly agree that obp is a better measure of a player’s value to an offense than is batting average. Obp is also, obviously, closer to being a stand-alone stat than is, say, rbi. For evaluating a player, that is. Not for predicting runs, though. Getting on base and not scoring does little or nothing to win the game. This is a team sport, and it seems obvious that both sorts of stats have value for analysis.

  25. In all the back and forth about Billy Hamilton, no one has mentioned the actual pros and cons of his game last night that I saw.

    Pro: He walked to lead off the first on a deep count.

    Pro: He hit two groundballs to the left side of the infield, batting left-handed, and beat both out.

    Con: Caught stealing again, dropping his success rate to 66%.

    It was fun to see him hit the HR, and it came at a really crucial time, but if Hamilton hits more than 20 over the wall HRs in his career I’d be surprised. It’s not a real part of his game.

    Speed is his game, and if he’s hitting grounders to the left side and walking, he’s going to be on base all the time. That’s great. If he’s getting caught stealing all the time, getting on base doesn’t really matter, so that’s not great.

    • He also made a decent catch and had a SB but probably not even worth mentioning. Even if the HR is not part of his game they still counted it in the final score – imagine? I’m going to put you in the “on the fence” column about Billy.

      • you don’t have to put me anywhere actually, i’ll find my own way.

        i did forget the catch, you’re right about that, it was awesome and that is great to see and means good things going forward.

        i did mention the HR, and noted that it was critical. the point of that post was that i was looking at things from yesterday’s game that i could think about going forward for billy, and i don’t think the HR is one of them.

        i did implicitly mention the stolen base by noting his overall success rate, which included the earlier SB. on a night when he goes 1 for 2, i’m not going to put the stolen base in the pro column.

  26. The Movement for the Glorification of Billy is alive! Praise Billy!

  27. Wow, this sure reminds me of the Adam Dunn conversations. Ironic that on so many levels, BHam is the anti-Dunn.

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About Richard Fitch

Father. Iowa born, Kentucky raised, NYC finished. I write about baseball. I wonder what Willie Shakespeare would have written had he met Willie Mays. Richard resides in protective custody at an undisclosed location in New Jersey.


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