Results tagged ‘ Billy Hamilton ’

AFL Reports: A’s and Reds

The Oakland A’s AFL report focuses on Grant Green. The video report looks at Green, James Simmons and Max Stassi.

I haven’t posted the Reds’ AFL video report on here. This might surprise you, but it talks about Billy Hamilton, along with Didi Gregorius and Donald Lutz.

 

And here are your Stars of the Day for Friday and Saturday:

 

Friday: Astros prospect George Springer had a perfect day, going 3-for-3 with  a pair of homers and two walks. He went 20-30 during the regular season and after a homer on Monday, he has four homers and five steals this fall.

Saturday: I don’t often give a Star to a pitcher who gives up a run, but I’ll make an exception here. Robbie Erlin of the Padres gave up a run on five hits over four innings, but he didn’t walk anyone and he struck out eight. He’s now second in the AFL in strikeouts with 25.

The Amazing Billy Hamilton

Plenty will be written about Reds prospect Billy Hamilton, now and in the future. He is, after all, heading to the All-Star Futures Game, where he’ll be able to show off his speed on a national stage. The crazy thing is, there’s a good chance he’ll have over 100 stolen bases before he gets to Kansas City.

Heading into tonight (June 28), Hamilton had 94 stolen bases. That’s right, 94. He’d been caught 19 times. That’s a success rate of 83.2 percent. He’s gone 21-for-24 in last 10 games and has 37 steals in June.

Not that perspective is needed, considering when he topped 100 steals in 2011 at the end of the year, it was such a huge deal because it hadn’t been done in a while. Now he’s going to get there by the All-Star break? Insane.

To provide some perspective anyway, the Miami Marlins currently lead the Majors in stolen bases for a team… with 67 steals. In 2011, 10 MLB teams had as many or fewer steals for the entire year as Hamilton currently has in 2012.

Currently, the top 4 basestealers in MLB combined have 89 steals. In the Minors, Deline DeShields Jr. has 54 steals in 61 attempts, which normally would attract a good amount of attention. However, the Astros’ prospect, while in 2nd place in the Minors, is 40 behind Hamilton.

Rickey Henderson stole 130 bases in 1982, the modern-day record. In 1887, Hugh Nicol stole 138 as part of the, you guessed it, Cincinnati Red Stockings. If Hamilton wants to set his sights on some Minor League marks, Vince Coleman stole 145 bases in the South Atlantic League in 1983 and Donell Nixon had 144 in the California League (Hamilton’s current circuit), also in 1983 (boy that must’ve been a fun race to watch).

 

Billy Hamilton: Man of Steal

I wrote about another cool Minor League statistical feat a few days ago, Matt Moore’s second straight 200-strikeout season. That one hadn’t been accomplished since 1982-83, when Sid Fernandez did it.

The last time someone stole 100 bases in a Minor League season wasn’t that far back — it was in 2001, when Chris Morris did it (he swiped a Midwest League record 111 bags). It’s still impressive, though, that Billy Hamilton (No. 3 on the Reds Top 10 prospects list) hit the century mark on Saturday. He’s now got 103 stolen bases on the year and has been caught just 20 times. He also leads the Midwest League in runs scored. And keep in mind this comes in the 140-game Minor League season, not over 162.

Having Delino DeShields as a manager this year clearly helped. DeShields stole 463 bases over the course of his big-league career. His career high in the Minors, though, was just 59. This brings up an interesting point. Take a look at the list of the previous 100-steal guys in the Minor Leagues:

Chris Morris (2001), 111
Esix Snead (2000), 109
Marcus Lawton (1985), 111
Donell Nixon (1984), 102
Vince Coleman (1984) 101
Vince Coleman (1983), 145
Donell Nixon (1983), 144
Lenny Dykstra (1983), 105
Otis Nixon (1982), 107
Jeff Stone (1981), 123
Alan Wiggins (1980), 120
Albert Hall (1980), 100

Aside from how much fun the early ’80s must’ve been in terms of base-stealing, this list is a bit of a mixed bag, isn’t it? The two most recent guys to get 100 steals, Morris and Snead, have 13 combined Major League at-bats. All of them are by Snead. Morris was out of baseball at age 25, never having gotten above Double-A ball. Snead stole over 500 bases in his Minor League career and some might put that in the Crash Davis “dubious honor” category. Marcus Lawton (Matt’s brother), had 14 big league at-bats and stole 379 bases in the Minors.

Donell Nixon, who did it twice, is Otis’ brother. Donell managed 396 ABs in the big leagues over parts of four seasons. Big bro, who topped 100 in the Minors the one time, played 17 seasons and swiped 620 career Major League bags. He, Coleman and Dykstra had the most successful careers on this list. The others I haven’t mentioned — Stone, Wiggins, Hall — had big-league time, but only Wiggins was an every-day player in that trio.

What does all of this mean? Nothing just yet. Hamilton is just turning 21 this week and this was his first taste of full-season ball. It was encouraging to see him start to hit better as the season wore on after starting off the year struggling. Minor League history is littered with speed guys who never make it because they don’t hit enough. I don’t think Hamilton is one of those guys, but here’s hoping he’s more Otis and Donell when all is said and done.

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