Kelly Gavin photos from the Rangers 8-4 loss to the Angels on Saturday

LA2Catcher A.J. Pierzynski tags out Howie Kendrick on a play at the plate in the fifth inning.

LA4Mitch Moreland hits his first home run of the season

LA1Second baseman Ian Kinsler on defense

LA3Nelson Cruz watches his ninth-inning home run



You know, there is something that Josh Hamilton doesn’t get, the baseball writers nationally and locally don’t seem to get, and it is perhaps the reason for the whole Josh Hamilton “welcome”. I believe the fans in this area all believe that Josh Hamilton quit on this team when the team needed him the most last year. His play was inconsistent and appeared lackluster. The perception of his nonchalant attitude towards throwing his bat into the stands so frequently, to his decision to quit smokeless tobacco after the season began, to his confession of overusing energy drinks during the season, to the seemingly effortless attempt on that fly ball in Oakland, and his complete lack of plate discipline in the playoff game vs. Baltimore. Nothing about Josh Hamilton last year seemed to be for the team. It was all about Josh and that was something we had not seen in the previous 4 years. That one season demolished everything he had built in the previous 4. More importantly, there was no response from Josh. No explanation. He loves to talk so much. Why didn’t he say “I understand that it may have appeared that I quit on my team but I want the fans to know that I did not.” Where were his teammates who undoubted heard this? Why did none of them come out and defend him? Nothing like that was said. Instead, we get to hear about how this is not a baseball town. We hear that after 3 million of us paid to watch and cheer this team on. We get to hear that after many of us who have grown up with this franchise over the past 43 years have remained loyal in good times and in bad. Then, we get to hear that even Jesus was mistreated most in his hometown. What a lie that is. Seems to me he was beaten and crucified in Jerusalem which was not His hometown. And, He was completely innocent. No one has ever accused Him of quitting on His team and it never appeared that way either. All Josh got was booed and jeered at. And, regrettably, there was some profanity thrown at him and even more regrettably at his family. So, we continue to get a self righteous Josh Hamilton who presents the perception that he has lost that humility that he gained after hitting rock bottom and receiving a second chance. And, nothing he says does anything to change that perception. I certainly don’t want to see him fall back into his addiction or any other and I don’t even want to see him fail, California/LA/Anaheim Angel or not. What I want and what I believe every other Rangers fan wants is to see the old Josh Hamilton. The humble over-comer who was all about his team and never about himself. Then, when he does great things, we can all cheer again and marvel at a talent that is rarely seen regardless of which team he plays for. Maybe all of it on each side is only perception, but as Bill Parcells said, it is what it is. He said that those who boo don’t get it. I submit that Josh Hamilton doesn’t get it. That’s all I’ve got.


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