Earlier this month, I marveled at since-waived Mets OF Rick Ankiel entering a game in the 13th inning and still managing to go 0-4 for with 3 K’s. It turns out, however, that Ankiel’s display of futility paled in comparison to that of the Angels’ struggling Josh Hamilton, who compiled the following line during last night’s 3-2, 10 inning defeat to the Mariners : 0 for 5, 2 Ks, 3 GIDPs, 7 left on base. CBS Sports’ Dayn Perry calls it, “the worst performance of Hamilton’s career”, and that’s including those Head & Shoulders commercials.
Hamilton is just the second player since 1916 (the back end of available data) to go hitless, strike out twice and hit into three double plays in a single game (he joins Jeff King of the 1990 Pirates). As a “bonus,” he tied the Angels’ franchise record for GIDPs in a game.
Hamilton on Tuesday night was quite obviously the opposite of “clutch.” The seven runners left on base will tell you that. But here’s another number: -.477. That’s Hamilton’s win probability added (WPA) for the game in question. WPA measures the percentage by which a player improves or worsens his team’s chances of winning. Stated another way, Hamilton, all by his lonesome, reduced the Angels’ chances of beating Seattle on Tuesday by 47.7 percent. That’s … not good.
On the season, Hamilton, who’s infamously in the first season of a five-year, $125 million contract, is now batting .213/.269/.388 and has shown a complete and utter inability to handle hard breaking stuff, especially on the outer half.