Bits: Billy Hamilton makes debut
Cincinnati Reds outfielder Billy Hamilton certainly played a key role in his big league debut Tuesday night, scoring the lone run in a victory over the St. Louis Cardinals. Of course, Hamilton did not bat in the game, or play the field, but he entered as a pinch runner for outfielder Ryan Ludwick, quickly stole a base against the great Yadier Molina and came around to score on a Todd Frazier hit, the first time anyone had scored the only run in a 1-0 game in their debut in more than 50 years.
Fantasy owners with visions of the next Vince Coleman dancing in their heads are going to add Hamilton today, and look, if you’re desperate for stolen bases, go for it. The guy is obviously ridiculously fast. He’s just not going to play that much. Reds manager Dusty Baker is famous for sticking with his veterans, and this team is right smack in a pennant race. Hamilton was a better prospect a year ago, frankly, when he swiped an incredible 155 bases at two minor league levels, hit a bit, showed some plate discipline and was a shortstop. At Triple-A Louisville this season he stole only 75 bags but went the other direction at the plate, dropping 100 points of on-base percentage, while learning center field. There were reports the Reds -- probably Baker -- didn’t want to promote him at all.
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