Josh Hamilton has a bad reputation.
A reputation that you thought couldn’t get any worse than the one that had blossomed in Texas in 2012. Well, now it’s worse in Los Angeles in 2015.
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Josh Hamilton is a troubled guy. He has a serious drug addiction. He’s flirted with death, he’s seen demons in thin air, he fights urges to abuse drugs each and every day and oh yeah, he also does his day job as a Major League Baseball player pretty damn well.
But because of those risks, the Texas Rangers only offered the 5 consecutive times All-Star about three years and $70 million in his big chance for a payday.
Josh Hamilton was a World Series hero, nearly bronzed in Texas Rangers history. He was in five straight all-star games as a Ranger and put on a historial show at the 2008 Home Run Derby while setting a new single round record with 28 long balls flying into the Yankee Stadium bleachers during round one of the contest.
But whether it was that sun-baked afternoon in Oakland in 2012, where a Manager confrontation, a lazy effort on a fly ball, the question of effort, the rift with his Rangers teammates or anything few and farther between, the Rangers threw a dart board at the chess table that was Josh Hamilton’s free agency.
So Josh Hamilton signed a 5-year $125 million dollar contract with a division rival, the Los Angeles Angels, not giving the Rangers a chance to match, something that was played way beyond its face value in the media.
That’s what media does, but it was yet another thing that exacerbated the fading image of Josh Hamilton in the public spotlight.
I met Josh Hamilton in 2011 when he was rehabbing from an arm injury, I was blown away.
Not entirely sure what to expect, Josh Hamilton became one of my most appreciated and liked players to simply put, one of my all-time favorites.
The Josh Hamilton you see in public and written about, talked about and picked apart by the media is not the Josh Hamilton I met. That’s Josh Hamilton.
You know the story, Josh Hamilton is back with the Texas Rangers after a real messy 2014-2015 in L.A.
After six games with the Rangers’ AAA-affiliate, the Round Rock Express, Hambone makes his way north to Frisco…and soon enough he’ll tread back south and to the West to Arlington.
Ok, you’ve ordered, waited in line now here’s your food: Josh Hamilton addressing the media today in Frisco, Texas.
Page 2: The Interview