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Marlins see significant drop in speed this season

Marlins see significant drop in speed this season

Marlins see significant drop in speed this season

MIAMI -- In a flash, speedster Billy Hamilton is making an impact on the bases for the Reds.

A September callup in Cincinnati, Hamilton has already been used as a pinch-runner to swipe a base. He did so twice in two appearances against the Cardinals, demonstrating that speed can be a major weapon.

When the Marlins won the World Series in 2003, they had speedsters in Juan Pierre and Luis Castillo causing havoc at the top of their order.

This year, speed hasn't been much of a weapon for Miami.

"Speed, obviously, is great," manager Mike Redmond said. "You can do a lot with guys who can run. We don't have that type of speed."

The Marlins have 68 total stolen bases, tied for 18th most in the Majors.

"We haven't been able to get guys on consistently enough to use our speed," Redmond said.

With 22 stolen bases, Pierre is Miami's leader. But the veteran has become primarily a bench player since July.

Justin Ruggiano (13) and Adeiny Hechavarria (11) are the only other Marlins in double-digits.

"You always want to have guys who can run, steal bases and change games with their feet," Redmond said. "Those guys are always nice. At the same time, too, those guys don't grow on trees.

"Everybody is kind of looking for the same guy, that bench player who can fly, steal bases and play outfield, infield, and do everything."

Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. He writes a blog, called The Fish Pond. Follow him on Twitter Less

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