There have been a lot of mentions at the Winter Meetings about the San Francisco Giants possibly being interested in Cincinnati Reds outfielder Billy Hamilton.
This is not something new. We’ve known for a while that the Giants have been interested in Hamilton, but it sounds like talks could be heating up this week.
The thought with possibly acquiring Hamilton is that he would give the Giants a Gold Glove center fielder in that huge outfield.
Hamilton has two more years of control through arbitration, and should be relatively cheap.
With Hamilton, you know you’re going to get Gold Glove defense in center field, and you know you’re going to get some stolen bases. He’s stolen at least 56 bases in four straight years.
What you’re not going to get with Hamilton is a high on-base-percentage and home runs. He has a career .298 on-base-percentage and 17 career home runs.
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It’s definitely not a perfect fit, but if the Giants feel their biggest need this offseason is to upgrade the outfield defense, Hamilton would certainly do that for them.
I think if the Giants were to trade for Hamilton, it would have to be followed by a big bag in one of the corner outfield spots.
The problem, as will be the case all offseason, is what do the Giants have to offer?
I don’t think the price tag for Hamilton will be very high, but the Reds also don’t have a reason to give him away. They’ll want a quality prospect in return, but maybe someone 6-10 in the Giants system.
If the Giants can pull off a trade for Hamilton without giving up any of their top prospects, then I think it makes sense. Otherwise, I’d rather them save those top prospects for a bigger trade.