Originally Posted by dougdirt
It is more of a common sense type of thing than a "so and so" did it in the past. If you were pitching and had the ability to throw the ball relatively close to where you wanted it, would you not throw Billy Hamilton strikes knowing that he isn't hitting it out of the park? MLB pitchers probably will do the same thing.
The difficulties with trying to find examples is that unlike the Major Leagues, there simply aren't databases available with minor league numbers that are searchable like there are for the Majors. That means you have to scour league by league, year by year, for players and you have to know which players you are looking for to begin with. Not a task many are willing to take on.
It's common sense to throw strikes, sure. But even major league pitchers aren't that great at it. How good would Edison Volquez be if he could simply throw strikes? But he can't. And there are more people like him in today's game than ever before. Saying it and doing it are miles apart-- even at the major league level.
There have been a metric ton of players with high BB rates and no power that have done very, very well at the major league level. At this point, the onus of proof lies with those that make the claim that Hamilton isn't one of those players. I assumed Fangraphs would do work like that. The author of that post didn't. That, IMO, is pure laziness that most journalists wouldn't think of doing. If you make a claim, you need to show proof. He didn't. At all. That's a really poor piece of journalism. Poorer than most of my high school kids, in fact, as all he showed as evidence was anecdotal evidence limited to a handful of ABs and one highly dubious "quote" from a nebulous scout.
His post would have gotten an F in my journalism class. Maybe a D- because of the scout quote.