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Thursday, September 25, 2014

Reds Injury Update: Billy Hamilton exits with concussion

By on 9/25/2014 08:15:00 AM

Cincinnati Reds centerfielder Billy Hamilton robbed Ryan Braun of a home run on Wednesday night, but it came at a price. C. Trent Rosencrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports that Hamilton hit his head on the padding at the top of the fence in front of the Reds' bullpen when making the spectacular grab in the third inning. The rookie told Rosencrans that it was difficult to concentrate under the lights after hitting his head:

"The padding – it's hard," Hamilton said. "I felt it right away. I thought I could stay out there, but going out there, the lights got to me and I couldn't concentrate that well. We made the decision to come out and we'll see how I feel tomorrow."
Hamilton did initially remain in the game but was replaced by Chris Heisey after playing just one more inning. Rosencrans writes that the outfielder was asked later if he was feeling better, to which he replied 'not at all'. With the Reds well out of contention and just four games left, there's a good chance Hamilton has played his last game this season.

If this is the end of Hamilton's 2014, he will finish with 56 steals and 2.4 WAR, the latter driven predominantly by his strong defensive showing: according to Baseball-Reference, Defensive Runs Saved puts Hamilton at 13 runs above average this season. However, he has also been caught stealing a league-leading 23 times and struck out almost four times as much as he has walked, a significant factor in his .292 OBP. For someone with Hamilton's speed to be a barely above-average baserunner is also disappointing and the 24-year-old will need to improve both at the plate and on the basepaths before he can become a truly valuable player.

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