Originally Posted by Scrap Irony
That's a good point and not one I had considered overly much. I think the calculus changes with the cleanup hitter up to bat, especially with only one out. (This could also lead to both Votto and the #2 hitter-- Phillips?-- boosting their stolen base attempts to career highs as part of double steals behind Hamilton.)
Another question/ challenge for you, RMR/ Atomic Dumpling:
Hamilton's on 1B. Phillips has gotten out without advancing him. I assume it's better to have Hamilton successfully steal 2B (with the opposing team then walking Votto to bring up another, lesser hitter that could hit into a double play) than for him to stay put.
How much better-- mathematically-- is it? In short, how much does that stolen base improve the Reds' chances to score runs? Because it changes the calculus of the whole inning, it can't be simply the 0.983 number, can it? Wouldn't it then have to change pretty significantly Cincinnati's favor?
Because, if so, I could see Hamilton running pretty much every time he gets on 1B, no matter the situation.
I'M not RMR or AD, but I don't risk making an out at 2B when Votto is coming up when the pay-off probably just means a walk to Votto anyway. I think Votto is so head and shoulders above everyone else in the line-up that I think the team has a better chance with him at bat and a runner on 1st than some one else up with runners on first and second. That's no slight at Ludwick, Bruce or Frazier, I just think Votto is that good. He's the best hitter the Red have had in my lifetime and that includes Rose, Bench, Davis, Larkin, Morgan Perez, Foster, Pinson and anyone else you can name. The closest was probably Kevin Mitchell during his short stint here or maybe Kal Daniels before he was hurt and his career faded.
I only have vague images of Robinson's last season, so maybe he'd compare, but Votto is the best of the rest.