Texas Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton had a very good season in 2012. It’s about as good of a season one who want to have before entering free agency. In the first two months, it was almost unthinkable to even imagine another American League MVP. After all, Hamilton hit four home runs in a game, the Rangers had the best record in baseball, and he was on pace to drive in about 160 runs and hit 60 bombs. According to Hamilton, however, the reason why he didn’t accomplish such a feat was he took June and July off.
“I still had a pretty good year. Just think if I hadn’t taken off June and July. We’ll work on that next year.”
This quote is fascinating on a multitude of levels. First off, I’m not going to grill Hamilton for what he said about “taking time off”. I’m fairly certain he said it to just joke about how poorly he did play in those months. I highly doubt he went all Randy Moss on the Rangers and mentally checked out of games for a matter of weeks. With that being said, though, it probably isn’t a very good idea to even throw out the idea you were tanking it when you are set to be the highest coveted free agent on the open market.
Secondly, is he implying he will be back with Texas next season? Who is the subject of his “we’ll”? Am I over-analyzing a simple quote? Maybe I am? Ok – I’ll stop now.
Hamilton is in a bit of a sticky situation. Similar to what Albert Pujols had to deal with last season, no one can really imagine Hamilton playing anywhere else besides the Texas Rangers – - just like no one could have predicted Pujols would stray away from the St. Louis Cardinals last winter. Hamilton isn’t a young guy by any means; ergo, this is his last shot as a major payday. But saying he took time off scare away some potential employers, especially given his off the field issues?
Luckily, we only have to wait a couple months to find out.
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