Originally Posted by Sabo Fan
I may be the only one who feels this way (and apologize in advance for being a buzzkill), but as entertaining as Hamilton is to follow, he's a side show, a circus act. He's obviously very gifted physically and can run like the wind but as he moves up into the upper levels of the minors his act will get less and less impressive. Pitchers will be better at holding him close and catchers will be better equipped to gun him down. The Reds would do well to cash him in at the deadline or this offseason as I don't expect his value to ever be higher. Speed is fleeting and he's one hamstring injury away from mediocrity. Yeah, he could be Vince Coleman, but the odds say he's more Joey Gathright.
For the record, I don't even think Vince Coleman was all that great. I think base stealers can be very exciting, but the great ones are almost aways great because they get on base and hit with some pop. Jose Reyes? Ricky Henderson? Tim Raines? Joe Morgan? Lou Brock? Ty Cobb? George Sisler? Sure, give me guys like that all day. Otis Nixon? Vince Coleman? Maury Wills? Gary Pettis? Willy Taveras? Curtis Goodwin? Tom Goodwin? I'd focus on finding a decent OPS instead.
There are some speed guys who were pretty good for a few years in their 20s. Guys like Willie Wilson come to mind and that would be the very top of the range for a guy like Hamilton IMO. Wilson was basically an out machine at the top of the order after age 30 though. In his best years a .320ish batting average was what drove his ability to get on base. The likelihood of being a .310+ hitter in the majors is pretty low. Hamilton just doesn't have the power to join, the Morgan, Brock, Cobb group, so he'll need a pretty high batting average to put up some of those Willie Wilson type years. Otherwise, he slides into that Otis Nixon group (Nixon's top OPS+ in his career was 94) if
he doesn't flame out in the massive amount of ground to cover between A+ and the big leagues. I'd cash him in ASAP for a high return if one is available and push the major league team to the next level.