Tale of The Tape
When the Astros move to the American League in 2013, their de facto divisional rivals will be the much-hated Dallas Rangers. Woo hoo! However, as the All Star Game is only a few hours away, let’s get this rivalry started and compare Houston’s best player to Dallas’ and see how they stack up.
Jose Altuve vs Josh Hamilton: TALE OF THE TAPE!
Josh Hamilton was drafted in 1999 but missed 3 years of pro ball due to “personal issues.” He is 31 years old and has accumulated 5 years of MLB service time. Jose Altuve was signed as an amateur free agent in 2007. Altuve is 22 and has a little under a year towards his MLB service time.
Hamilton is the greasy old veteran who is on the wrong side of 30 and Altuve is the up-and-comer still wet behind the ears. Once Altuve is 30, he’ll have 8 ½ years of uninterrupted service time – unlike Hamilton. …so right now, it’s too close to call. I’d give the edge to Altuve, but, Hamilton does have him in raw numbers.
Josh Hamilton is 6’4” and 240lbs. Jose Altuve is 5’5” and 155lbs. This is a no-brainer, right? Josh Hamilton is built like a linebacker.
But! But! But! But, I’ve seen Altuve with his shirt off (don’t ask) and the dude is freak of nature. He has more cuts than Paul Pierce at a Benihanas. Proportionally smaller, Altuve has a chest like Arnold, arms like Andre Johnson and legs that would be best described as a juiced-up version of pitbull haunches.
Advantage: Jose Altuve
Currently Josh Hamilton is leading the world in everything. He’s leading the AL with 27 homeruns and 75 RBI. He’s also got a .308 batting average.
Meanwhile, Jose Altuve has 5 homers and 27 RBI. Altuve is batting .303.
However, if Jose Altuve was as tall as Josh Hamilton, we can postulate that his statistics would be much better than those of Hamilton’s. For example, I did a little bit of math and came up with a formula called “Fixed Adjusted Ratio Tallness Statistics” or FARTS. FARTS is an easy way to determine how good a player would be at a certain height. So examining Altuve’s FARTS and comparing them to Hamilton’s FARTS, we can get a good idea of how good each player would be at the same height. So, I did the math (don’t worry about the formula because it is too hard for you to understand) and, at 6’4”, Jose Altuve’s FARTS would suggest that he would have hit 28 homeruns and have over 80 RBI. Also, his FARTS tell us that he’d boost his batting average by more than 20 points. Jose’s line would look like .324/30/80 if he were 6’4”. That’s considerably better than Hamilton’s numbers and he is 6’4”.
Also, if you equate Altuve’s Wins Equivalence Translated Tallness or WETT, which is a player’s WAR that accounts for their height, Altuve’s WETT FARTS surpasses the WETT FARTS of Josh Hamilton.
So, clearly, at the same height, Altuve would have better statistics at this point in the season.
Advantage: Jose Altuve (clearly)
Josh Hamilton tweets Bible verses and Jose Altuve’s nickname is Pocket Jesus.
Advantage: Jose Altuve
When Josh Hamilton’s name is brought up, the term “overcame so many obstacles just to get here” is somewhere close by. Josh Hamilton was the first player drafted in 1999 by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. Of course, we all know what happened. Hamilton was plagued by injuries and got addicted to drugs. He didn’t even play baseball for 3 years! But, he found his way onto a major league roster when the Cubs selected him from the Rays in the rule 5 draft and then sold his rights to the Reds. After a great season in Cincy, he was dealt to the Dallas Rangers and now he is a perennial All Star and regarded as one of the best players in major league baseball. Awesome story and the guy deserves credit.
I’ve had folks in my life overcome various addictions – so I understand how tough it is.
It was a sad story, and to this point, has a happy ending. Great.
But, is his story any more miraculous than Jose Altuve’s?
In short? No.
My God! Jose Altuve is 5’5”! The guy isn’t even allowed on The Rattler at Fiesta Texas and people are talking about how awesome it is that Josh Hamilton put the bottle down. Excuse me, folks, but Josh Hamilton isn’t 5’4”, he’s 6’4” – he’s fully grown and has all the athletic ability in the world.
And, Jose Altuve makes Eddie Gaedel look like Patrick Ewing.
God gave Jose Altuve 5’3” and said, “Work with what you got, son,” and Altuve grinded his ass off until he found himself on a Major League roster. Jose Altuve hit at every single level in the minor leagues and people STILL doubted him because he was only 5’2” and didn’t fit into the “cookie cutter” image of Josh Hamilton! Even before the season started there were bloggers and pundits predicted the diminutive Altuve’s demise because of his small stature and their small brains. …and people are STILL doubting him!
I get it, the Rangers are hot right now. They’re on the upswing and the Astros are down in the Johnny flusher – I get it. The Rangers are the Emma Stone of the baseball world and the Astros are the wacky chick that played Alex Keaton’s sister – not Justine Bateman, she’s hot, but the other one – yeah, her. I get it. But, that doesn’t mean that Jose Altuve’s story isn’t twice as awesome as Josh Hamilton’s tale of redemption. Look, love him or hate him, Josh Hamilton really screwed the Tampa Bay Rays. The lowly Rays used the FIRST OVERALL pick on Josh Hamilton and all he did was do a bunch of drugs, get hurt and leave town in a cloud of dust.
Who did Jose ever screw?
Jose Altuve is 4’11” and has never screwed anyone! You know what he does when he gets home? He spends all night hemming his pants and choosing not to do drugs. Then he reads a story and goes to sleep. In the morning, he wakes up refreshed, has a glass of milk, goes out to the ballpark and kicks so much ass it’s ridiculous. Josh Hamilton doesn’t have to hem is own pants. Josh Hamilton doesn’t drink milk!
There are a lot of major leaguers who have overcome drug or alcohol addictions. Ron Washington is a year removed from snorting lines longer than Jose Altuve is tall – and he’s in the same dugout with Hamilton. And, don’t get me started on Alexi Ogando and the likelihood of him taking some sort of hallucinogenics – I’m not even going there, sister.
Don’t get me wrong, it is awesome that Josh Hamilton has found sobriety and I’m glad he’s going to parlay his clean living and God-given talent into a hefty Yankees contract, but you’re insane if you think his story of hardship can hold a candle (or lit crackpipe) to Jose Altuve’s.
With a convincing 4-0 victory, Jose Altuve wins the Tale of the Tape over Josh Hamilton.