Billy Hamilton is now a New York Met.
Billy Hamilton figured to be a speedy addition to the San Francisco Giants, but Gabe Kapler an Co. have traded him away before he even played a game with the big league club.
Hamilton has been traded to the New York Mets in exchange for minor league pitcher Jordan Humphreys, as Luis Rojas is looking for an extra jolt in a stagnant lineup.
Billy Hamilton will give the Mets a new dose of speed.
The Mets won’t be losing a long-term building block in Humphreys. Injuries have limited the promising pitcher to a handful of games during the last few seasons.
Hamilton originally rose to fame after breaking stolen base records as a minor leaguer for the Cincinnati Reds. He backed up the hype by becoming one of the league’s most dangerous stolen base threats and defensive center fielders. He stole 56 bases during each of his first four full seasons while placing second in NL Rookie of the Year voting in 2014.
Unfortunately, Hamilton’s bat never matched his speed or defense, as his inability to make contact and drive the ball, evidenced by his career OPS+ of 68, led to the Reds cutting bait with him. After splitting 2019 between the Royals and Braves, Hamilton signed a minor league deal with the Giants this offseason.
The Mets have stolen just five bases this season, and that will change if Hamilton gets on the major league team.
The Mets don’t need Hamilton to be Pete Alonso, but they will ask him to provide a major injection of speed and defensive stability to their outfield. For the price of a minor league pitcher that is still a ways away from the major leagues, this looks like a worthwhile gamble for the Mets to take.