Updates from Sunday, May 11
C. Trent Rosecrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer confirmed that Billy Hamitlon is in the lineup for the Reds on Sunday:
Billy’s back - #Reds lineup: Hamilton 8, Schumaker 9, Phillips 4, Votto 3, Frazier 5, Ludwick 7, Barnhart 2, Santiago 6, Bailey 1— ctrent (@ctrent) May 11, 2014
Updates from Saturday, May 10
The Reds' official Twitter feed has an update on Hamilton for Saturday's game:
Updates from Friday, May 9
C. Trent Rosecrans of The Cincinnati Enquirer has the latest on Hamilton's status:
#Reds lineup: Schumaker 8, Pena 2, Phillips 4, Votto 3, Frazier 5, Ludwick 7, Heisey 9, Cozart 6, Cueto 1— ctrent (@ctrent) May 9, 2014
Updates from Wednesday, May 7
MLB Lineups Tweeted the Reds lineup, which did not include Billy Hamilton:
5/7 @Reds lineup vs. BOS Schumaker CF Votto 1B Phillips 2B Frazier 3B Pena C Ludwick DH Bernadina RF Heisey LF Cozart SS Leake P— MLBLineups (@mlblineups) May 7, 2014
Updates from Tuesday, May 6
MLB.com Lineups confirmed that Billy Hamilton will miss the first game of the series against the Boston Red Sox:
5/6 @Reds lineup vs. BOS Heisey RF Votto 1B Phillips 2B Frazier 3B Ludwick LF Schumaker CF Cozart SS Soto DH Barnhart C Bailey P— MLBLineups (@mlblineups) May 6, 2014
Mark Sheldon of MLB.com provided details on how a batting practice session went this afternoon with Hamilton:
Hamilton took 3 swings, could not grip bat anymore. Will get looked at by Kremchek again later here. DL is a possibility. More later #reds— Mark Sheldon (@m_sheldon) May 6, 2014
John Fay of The Cincinnati Enquirer provides more details on Hamilton:
Jocketty doesn't expect to put Hamilton on DL. Says playing won't further damage it, matter of getting to where he tolerate the pain #reds— John Fay (@johnfayman) May 6, 2014
Updates from Sunday, May 4
The Reds confirmed that Billy Hamilton is out of Cincinnati's lineup today via the team's Twitter account:
Updates from Friday, May 2
According to the Reds' official Twitter feed, Hamilton is out of today's lineup:
Hamilton talked about the injury to C. Trent Rosecrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer:
Billy Hamilton said the biggest issue right now is gripping his bat and squeezing glove. will be available to run. #Reds— ctrent (@ctrent) May 2, 2014
On the very first pitch of Thursday's National League Central Division game between the Cincinnati Reds and the Milwaukee Brewers, Reds center fielder Billy Hamilton robbed Brewers star Carlos Gomez of an extra-base hit.
Unfortunately, it came at a price, as Hamilton sprained the third and fourth knuckles in his left hand after making the excellent catch to bail out his starting pitcher, Homer Bailey. Mark Sheldon of MLB.com reported on Hamilton's condition:
Sprained 3rd and 4th knuckle of left hand for Hamilton, #reds say.— Mark Sheldon (@m_sheldon) May 1, 2014
MLB.com's Mark Sheldon reports on Hamilton's timeline for return:
Hamilton expected to not start tomorrow. He is likely out a day or two, said Price. #reds— Mark Sheldon (@m_sheldon) May 2, 2014
MLB.com provided video footage of the play in the top of the first at Great American Ball Park:
ESPN Radio personality Mo Egger was a bit perplexed by Hamilton's diagnosis:
You can sprain a knuckle?— Mo Egger (@MoEgger1530) May 1, 2014
Hamilton is just 23 years of age but is already making a splash in the big leagues. He hit his first career home run in Tuesday's win over the Chicago Cubs, but manager Bryan Price mentioned how that's not really Hamilton's game, per Sheldon's recap:
It's nice to know the power is there. The power can be seductive too at times. The thing is, I've never seen Billy try to hit the ball out of the ballpark and give away at-bats trying to get the ball into the air. He's been very cognizant of really trying to stay on top of the ball and trying to shoot line drives and hard groundballs through the infield.
Range in the outfield and speed running the bases are Hamilton's strengths, the latter of which is second to almost no one in baseball. According to Hamilton's ESPN.com profile, he's on pace to steal 64 bases in 2014, which will be his first full MLB season.
If he finds a way to get on base more than his current .245 batting average and .280 OBP dictate, Hamilton could really make some noise. Although he's still adjusting to the highest level, there is promise to suggest that Hamilton can morph into a star.
The hope is that the Reds can see him get back onto the field soon, because experience will inevitably accelerate Hamilton's development and help Cincinnati improve over time. That's necessary after a 12-15 start to the season, which already has the Reds behind the Milwaukee Brewers by 7.5 games.
There is considerable ground to make up even at this early stage of the year, so losing Hamilton for any extended period of time would be tough for Price's club to overcome.