Josh Hamilton Never Reached Base in Nine At Bats Last Night, and Has Now Matched Albert Pujols' Start With the Angels Last Year

Josh Hamilton's sac fly was the highlight of his night

Josh Hamilton came to the plate nine times last night in the Angels’ 19-inning loss to Oakland. He made nine outs–including one sacrifice fly and three strikeouts. While that may sound like a historically bad night–and it is in relatively small company–there have been others who have had as many or more plate appearances without reaching base. Thirty-four times since 1916 a player has had at least 9 plate appearances and failed to reach base.

Martin Prado was the last to do it, last year in a game against the Pirates. John Shelby of the Dodgers failed to reach base in ten plate appearances in a 22-inning affair against Houston back on June 3, 1989. The most plate appearances without reaching base belongs to Danny Thompson of the Twins, who went 0 for 11 in a 22-inning game that stretched over two days in 1972. [all data from baseball-reference.com]

While it may not have set the record for futility, the gem turned in by Hamilton comes at the end of a disastrous opening 25 games for Hamilton with the Angels. How bad? Well, John Heyman puts it in perspective.

Albert turned his season around after that slow start. The problem is that Hamilton has been fairly pedestrian for a long stretch, since that amazing start to last year and 4 home run performance in May. Since May 13 of last year, when he hit his 18th home run of the 2012 season, Hamilton has put up the following numbers:.252/.324/.493, 25 home runs in 117 games played.

To put that in perspective, that is basically Mark Trumbo or Cody Ross. That production is fine if you are not paying a guy a huge contract. The Angels better hope that he has a month as hot as last May as the calendar turns.

[photo via USA Today Sports Images]

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