Josh Hamilton opened the 2012 season in eye-popping fashion, posting MVP numbers in what was to be a record contract year. The man who earlier this season hit four home runs in a game has hit a major slump. The raucous cheers have become uncharacteristic boos by the same Rangers fans who have stuck with him through thick and thin.
Hamilton has hinted that there is more to his recent slump than his timing or inability to locate a pitch.
It’s time for the Texas Rangers and MLB officials to take off the kid gloves when it comes to dealing with Hamilton.
(Dallas Morning News)
Last weekend Hamilton opened the Rangers homestand going 1-for-14, the power-hitting leftfielders’ numbers have dropped drastically since his hot start including batting .145 for the month of July.
When speaking with the media, Hamilton didn’t deny that anything was wrong, he just stopped short of revealing what it was.
“There’s so much more involved. I don’t know,” he said. “I’m cool, man. I’m really good. The frustrating part is this [dealing with the media] and not being able to share everything with you guys. When the time is right, I’ll be honest with you, you’ll be right in the loop,” Hamilton said according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “I’ve been shown a lot of things over the past week. There’s disobedience and there’s obedience to God. I’ve been being disobedient. It may be a small thing to you, but it’s a big thing to him. There’s consequences. It’s like a father and a kid. There are disciplines. You guys can chew on that and think about it.”
On Wednesday, Rangers manager Ron Washington, who has dealt with his own demons, told ESPN Dallas 103.3 that he is aware of Hamilton’s problem but noted that is up to Hamilton when he will address it:
“The issues is something that I think Josh would definitely have to be the one to expose.It’s certainly not physical. It has nothing to do with injuries. Josh is the one that made the statement and got all the inquiries going, and I think Josh is the one that has to put a rest to the inquiries, not Ron Washington. I can just tell you one thing: It is not because he’s hurt.”
It’s time for major league baseball to deal with Josh Hamilton. He’s run through all the stop signs and is headed for a collision at the plate. There is no more feel good story - get this man some real help outside of his clubhouse. Steve Howe, Darryl Strawberry and Dwight Gooden were suspended several times and I’ll take a chance in stating that Hamilton has never seen the inside of Bud Selig’s office. Hamilton’s history with substance abuse and these recent comments negates his leverage. Now he’s kicking game like ‘Gator’ in ‘Jungle Fever’ and the press is buying it. This whole charade with him is tired and outdated. This is the same person said that he didn’t owe the Rangers organization anything in terms of a hometown discount in the upcoming free agency period. The Rangers are fools if they mortgage their future on a player like Hamilton by offering him top dollar.
To everyone else, buyer beware.
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