I didn’t believe it when I read it for the first time, but the video confirms it’s true: Reds outfielder Billy Hamilton did indeed score from second base on a passed ball on Tuesday afternoon against the Cubs.
In the top of the first inning facing John Lackey, Hamilton worked a one-out walk, then stole second base with Joey Votto batting. Votto then worked a walk, bringing up Jay Bruce. Lackey’s first pitch to Bruce was a curve on the outer portion of the plate, and catcher David Ross just couldn’t come up with it. The ball skipped through his legs towards the brick wall. Ross was lackadaisical in retrieving the ball, assuming Hamilton taking third base was guaranteed and that’s where he’d stop. But Lackey didn’t cover home, so Hamilton kept going. He slid headfirst and touched home plate just as Lackey got there.
[mlbvideo id=”897288283″ width=”600″ height=”336″ /]
According to MLB.com’s Daren Willman, Hamilton reached a top speed of 22.8 MPH. Ridiculous speed.
I do wonder if we’ll get any indignant columns about Ross and Lackey’s lack of hustle.
On Friday evening, Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association announced the first set of results for COVID-19 testing as part of the mandatory intake screening process under MLB’s COVID-19 Health Monitoring & Testing Plan. Per Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle, the Athletics are not part of this data because their testing has not yet been completed.
There were 38 positive tests, accounting for 1.2% of the 3,185 samples collected and tested. 31 of the 38 individuals who tested positive are players. 19 different teams had one or more individuals test positive.
Sports Illustrated’s Emma Baccellieri notes that the positive test rate in the U.S. nationally is 8.3 percent. The NBA’s positive test rate was 7.1 percent. MLB’s positive test rate is well below average. This doesn’t necessarily mean that anything is wrong with MLB’s testing or that it’s an atypical round of testing. Rather, MLB’s testing population may more closely represent the U.S. population as a whole. Currently, because testing is still somewhat limited, those who have taken tests have tended to be those exhibiting symptoms or those who have been around others who have tested positive. If every single person in the U.S. took a test, the positive test rate would likely come in at a much lower number.
Several players who tested positive have given their consent for their identities to be made known. Those are: Delino DeShields (link), Brett Martin (link), Edward Colina, Nick Gordon, and Willians Astudillo (link). Additionally, Red Sox lefty Eduardo Rodríguez has not shown up to Red Sox camp yet because he has been around someone who tested positive, per The Athletic’s Jen McCaffrey.