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OnBaseMachine
06-27-2010, 03:44 AM
Nice article on Billy Hamilton from the Billings Gazette:


Always a threat to steal a base, Hamilton is considered one of the fastest and best all-around athletes in the Reds’ farm system. He also has great range as a middle infielder and is considered to have a huge defensive upside. MLB.com, for instance, described Hamilton as “a young Tony Fernandez.”


Right now he is trying to become a switch-hitter. Naturally right-handed, Hamilton used to playfully take pitches from the left side in the batting cage last season.

So coaches with the GCL Reds asked him if he wanted to give it a serious go.

“I said, ‘I’ll try,’” Hamilton remembers. “The tough part is just seeing pitches. I’m more of a right-handed guy so I can see pitches pretty good right-handed. But this is professional baseball and they’ve got more pitches than they did in high school.”


Full article:
http://billingsgazette.com/sports/baseball/professional/minor/pioneer-league/mustangs/article_faf3d5f0-8020-11df-ba09-001cc4c002e0.html

Benihana
06-27-2010, 10:54 AM
Quickly becoming my favorite prospect in the system. Would love to see him become a switch-hitting Brandon Phillips.

lollipopcurve
06-27-2010, 11:07 AM
Many of us were surprised they pushed him to Billings, and now he isn't hitting, like he didn't hit last year. Should he be in Billings? Should he be switch-hitting? Too soon to tell, but Hamilton is clearly a "project" who has done little to indicate his potential is translating to the field. At some point, confidence becomes an issue.

Benihana
06-27-2010, 02:35 PM
Many of us were surprised they pushed him to Billings, and now he isn't hitting, like he didn't hit last year. Should he be in Billings? Should he be switch-hitting? Too soon to tell, but Hamilton is clearly a "project" who has done little to indicate his potential is translating to the field. At some point, confidence becomes an issue.

I'm not surprised he's in Billings. Show me a HS hitter drafted in the first two rounds that has repeated the GCL.

I'd give him at least another month in Billings before I'd start to worry about his ability to hit.

GIDP
06-27-2010, 02:36 PM
http://img413.imageshack.us/img413/3500/ssstandsforsuperstop.gif

Enough said.

lollipopcurve
06-27-2010, 06:51 PM
Show me a HS hitter drafted in the first two rounds that has repeated the GCL.

Show me a high school hitter drafted in the first two rounds who started to switch hit upon entering pro ball.


I'd give him at least another month in Billings before I'd start to worry about his ability to hit.

Don't let my concern concern you, then.

Benihana
06-28-2010, 12:35 AM
Show me a high school hitter drafted in the first two rounds who started to switch hit upon entering pro ball.

So he should repeat the AZL because he just decided to try to switch hit?


Don't let my concern concern you, then.

I won't. 2-for-4 tonight.

lollipopcurve
06-28-2010, 08:42 AM
So he should repeat the AZL because he just decided to try to switch hit?

He's being pushed despite having hit poorly in the GCL and trying to learn to switch hit. Worthy of an observation, don't you think?


I won't. 2-for-4 tonight.

I don't know about you, but I'm going to let it play out and revisit later in the summer. Feel free to crow every time Hamilton has a good game. I'm rooting for him too.

Mario-Rijo
06-28-2010, 09:05 AM
http://img413.imageshack.us/img413/3500/ssstandsforsuperstop.gif

Enough said.

You have got to be kidding me, is that real and Billy Hamilton? That dude can flat get up and he looked like he could have went higher, Billy "His Airness" Hamilton? I always thought of him as an elite level athlete but even in those thoughts I just didn't see that coming, extremely impressive. BTW someone said a switch hitting BP, I'm thinking Jose Reyes level athlete.

On his hitting, he can always give up the switch hitting at some point and he is what 19 right now? If he reaches MLB bye 2015 he will still have made it in a reasonable time frame. That is a long time to get things figured out, as a matter of fact I'll give him until 2011 is over before I start to get concerned about him, mid 2012 before I start to think he has no shot. Just let him play and learn until then IMO.

medford
06-28-2010, 09:22 AM
He's being pushed despite having hit poorly in the GCL and trying to learn to switch hit. Worthy of an observation, don't you think?


They also had all of extended spring training to watch him hit/field and make a more informed decision on where he should be playing this season. You may choose to trust the Reds or not trust, or wait to see it play out as you said, but they have much more than just 1 GCL season to base their assignment to Billings for Mr Hamilton.

either way, that defensive play was unreal. How great would it be to have a switch hitting leadoff man w/ that kind of defensive range at SS.

lollipopcurve
06-28-2010, 10:06 AM
I'm thinking Jose Reyes level athlete.

This is the hope, and will remain the hope for a while if he struggles. And rightfully so. He does look to have off-the-charts athleticism.

But we need to remember that baseball is not track, and somewhere along the line a player needs to experience success, or the "game of failure" will start to feel like defeat. Exhibit A, I would say, is Mesoraco. He really needed to be back in high A this year.

This time next week Hamilton could be hitting .300, drawing a walk and stealing a base every now and then, and my concern will dissipate.

As noted, he's got plenty of time and lots to work with. Still, there seems to be a wealth of young middle infield talent in the system right now, so Hamilton does face a number of challenges, not just in developing his own game, as he starts up the ladder.

lollipopcurve
06-28-2010, 10:09 AM
They also had all of extended spring training to watch him hit/field and make a more informed decision on where he should be playing this season. You may choose to trust the Reds or not trust, or wait to see it play out as you said, but they have much more than just 1 GCL season to base their assignment to Billings for Mr Hamilton.

Agreed, and this may be a cause for optimism. Yet, they probably also realized they needed to open a spot for Junior Arias.

medford
06-28-2010, 10:27 AM
Agreed, and this may be a cause for optimism. Yet, they probably also realized they needed to open a spot for Junior Arias.

True. They also may look at it that they want him in Dayton next year to sink/swim in a full season league as a previous high draft pick, so Billings was the logical step in between.

lollipopcurve
06-28-2010, 10:43 AM
True. They also may look at it that they want him in Dayton next year to sink/swim in a full season league as a previous high draft pick, so Billings was the logical step in between.

I think there must be a sink or swim approach on some level -- they have been aggressive in bringing in SS types the last couple years -- though I doubt they plan rosters more than a year in advance.

Hoosier Red
06-28-2010, 11:12 AM
Show me a high school hitter drafted in the first two rounds who started to switch hit upon entering pro ball.



That's my concern too, I'm not familiar with switch hitters but don't most of them come to pro ball as switch hitters? If a guy's having trouble hitting, what's the advantage in making him learn from both sides?

But as was later pointed out, the Reds have more information than I do.

GIDP
06-28-2010, 11:18 AM
You have got to be kidding me, is that real and Billy Hamilton? That dude can flat get up and he looked like he could have went higher, Billy "His Airness" Hamilton? I always thought of him as an elite level athlete but even in those thoughts I just didn't see that coming, extremely impressive. BTW someone said a switch hitting BP, I'm thinking Jose Reyes level athlete.

On his hitting, he can always give up the switch hitting at some point and he is what 19 right now? If he reaches MLB bye 2015 he will still have made it in a reasonable time frame. That is a long time to get things figured out, as a matter of fact I'll give him until 2011 is over before I start to get concerned about him, mid 2012 before I start to think he has no shot. Just let him play and learn until then IMO.

Yea its Hamilton and its real.

He sounds like a possible Jose Reyes type of talent to me also.

Benihana
07-18-2010, 06:29 PM
Bump. 3 weeks later, as expected, Hamilton has been shining- posting an .827 OPS without a single HR (batting .300 with 4 3Bs). If he can develop any kind of power, look out. Even without it, he could be a hell of a catalyst as a leadoff hitter.

The nucleus of Hamilton, Arias, Yorman and Duran is going to be very fun to follow through the minors. Dayton will be a nice place to see a game next summer.

redsmetz
07-19-2010, 06:05 AM
Show me a high school hitter drafted in the first two rounds who started to switch hit upon entering pro ball.

This article names some players, none early rounders. But it does indicate that it takes time and it's not unheard of for a player to begin switch hitting in the pros (even in the majors). Ted Simmons said the earlier a player starts switch hitting, the better, but again, it has been done. And results early on for those switching later were, at times, abysmal.

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/columns/story?columnist=kurkjian_tim&id=2475203

OnBaseMachine
08-04-2010, 10:27 PM
“I’m starting to understand what these pitchers are trying to do to me,” the switch-hitting Hamilton said. “I watch the defense and I pick my spots. I try to work on that spot particularly, so it’s working pretty good.”

http://www.billingsgazette.com/sports/baseball/professional/minor/pioneer-league/mustangs/article_cabdd59a-9f90-11df-bfc6-001cc4c03286.html

GIDP
08-04-2010, 11:25 PM
doesnt it seem pretty advanced for him to be actively trying to pick spots to hit the ball? I know guys have an idea but how that sounds its like something Luis Castillo would say.

OnBaseMachine
09-07-2010, 03:13 PM
Mustangs manager Delino DeShields knows Hamilton’s worth. So does everyone who watches him: Hamilton was voted to the Pioneer League’s all-star team earlier on Monday.

“To me he’s the MVP of this league,” DeShields said. “If you take him out of our lineup we go downhill in a hurry. The stuff he does out there, you can’t teach guys.”


http://billingsgazette.com/sports/baseball/professional/minor/pioneer-league/mustangs/article_5720b29a-ba4a-11df-9b8e-001cc4c002e0.html

fearofpopvol1
09-07-2010, 06:56 PM
I love this kid. I hope he moves back to SS and can stick there. He's become my favorite prospect.

OnBaseMachine
11-16-2010, 12:46 PM
Last night Jamie Ramsey was asked why Billy Hamilton played mostly second base this season and he said he would ask someone in the Reds organization about it today. Well, here's his answer:

@jinazreds I got word that Billy Hamilton is a prospect at both positions and that he's playing second for added versatility.

http://twitter.com/Jamieblog

nemesis
11-16-2010, 05:52 PM
And proves Kevin Goldstein is lazy...

dougdirt
11-16-2010, 06:58 PM
And proves Kevin Goldstein is lazy...

Or they asked two different people and got two different answers.

nemesis
11-16-2010, 08:20 PM
Or they asked two different people and got two different answers.

Lol. God I hope not. I would hope the development people would be on the same page. I am more inclined to believe he is still an option at SS.

Kingspoint
11-17-2010, 09:17 PM
Walt, like the G.M. before him, believes that minor leaguers should be ready at several positions as the needs of the parent club can change from year-to-year.

You can see it in his approach to others and their defensive switches.

The minor leagues is for development, and a player that's developed at more than one position is more valuable.

When I was talking about Valaika in the other thread, I mentioned that Walt could use one more year of Phillips at the Major League level, while seasoning Valaika again at AAA, if only to see how fast Hamilton can progress at 2nd Base during 2011.

nemesis
11-18-2010, 01:59 PM
Walt could use one more year of Phillips at the Major League level, while seasoning Valaika again at AAA, if only to see how fast Hamilton can progress at 2nd Base during 2011.

I think Henry Rodriguez is being very undervalued at this stage. I truly believe he is the Long Term Second Baseman of the future. As a 20 year old on a horrible Dayton squad he OPS'd .810, commited only 14 E's in 113 games. (Arias committed 25 in 43, Gregorious 31 in 119) Swiped 33 bases and had 54 XBH. Not to shabby for a guy who had never played above Rookie Ball. I could see him in Cincy by late 2012. Redsof72 said he has some other issues to work on some at the plate some of the field but I am hopeful he turns out a top 3 to 5 Prospect.

Scrap Irony
11-18-2010, 02:04 PM
I like Rodriguez, but the questions of his attitude and work ethic really worry me and drop him a few spots.

mace
11-18-2010, 02:36 PM
Second base has quietly become an interesting position in the organization. Hamilton is of course the wildcard, but if you include him, the inventory under Phillips looks something like this:

Valaika
Kahaulelio
Buchholz
Puckett
Rodriguez
Hamilton
Torreyes
Diaz
and maybe some guys who don't stick at SS

Scrap Irony
11-18-2010, 05:31 PM
The guy undervalued on this list is, IMO, Puckett. That 850 OPS in a tougher league (A+) looks better than does Rodrigez's 810 in Dayton. His glove has continually graded out as solid according to the numbers and scouts like his power tool, though they question his contact rate and arm.

If he can play a legitimate 2B (and, at this point, there's no reason to think he can't), he's a poor man's Aaron Boone.

dougdirt
11-18-2010, 06:03 PM
The guy undervalued on this list is, IMO, Puckett. That 850 OPS in a tougher league (A+) looks better than does Rodrigez's 810 in Dayton. His glove has continually graded out as solid according to the numbers and scouts like his power tool, though they question his contact rate and arm.

If he can play a legitimate 2B (and, at this point, there's no reason to think he can't), he's a poor man's Aaron Boone.

Maybe the wrong thread? But even so, Puckett isn't likely to stick at 2B.