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There’s something troubling going on with Josh Hamilton

Aug 1, 2012, 9:23 PM EDT

hamilton tall getty Getty Images

Josh Hamilton batted just .177/.253/.354 in July, which would be reason enough to think that something’s not quite right with the MVP outfielder. Now add these cryptic comments, uttered by Hamilton late last week following a 1-for-14 homestand:

“When the time is right, I’ll be honest with you, you’ll be right in the loop. 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.”

Then there’s the even more cryptic quote below, offered Wednesday morning on a Dallas radio program by Rangers manager Ron Washington:

“The issue 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.”

Commenters on the Rangers-centric blog Baseball Time In Arlington have suggested that Hamilton might be going through a divorce with his wife Katie, through nobody has any facts to back that up. The drug and alcohol addict had a relapse in February at a bar in Fort Worth but has seemingly kept clean this summer.

Hamilton, 31, is currently scheduled to hit the open market five days after the conclusion of the 2012 World Series. He’ll be one of the most interesting cases in the history of free agency given all that’s taken place.

145 Comments (Feed for Comments)
  1. drmcsexy - Aug 1, 2012 at 9:27 PM

    Ahhhh, so Josh Hamilton isn’t playing good because of a fairy tale?

    • protius - Aug 2, 2012 at 7:18 AM

      Ahhhh, so you talk like a fool because you’re uninformed?

  2. steelcity333 - Aug 1, 2012 at 9:35 PM

    I really hope he didn’t relapse. He seemed like he changed his life. While a divorce is horrible especially with kids being involved hopefully he doesn’t hurt himself by falling off the wagon.

    • bjbeliever - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:09 PM

      Is it wrong to hope for illicit affair?!?!

      • baseballisboring - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:30 PM

        Normally. In this situation…I mean, I hope it’s something less than that. But if he’s back on drugs that’s even worse.

      • chuckj1234 - Aug 1, 2012 at 11:05 PM


  3. randygnyc - Aug 1, 2012 at 9:39 PM

    I predicted this divorce at the time his father in law changed his mind about being his responsibility coach. I wouldn’t be surprised, nor would I blame her. She could either have access to his money while being in a humiliating marriage, or can half of what he has now and in the future, and not have to be subjected to his “character defects”.

    • protius - Aug 2, 2012 at 7:35 AM

      I think the agreement reads in part: In good times and bad, and in sickness and in health.

      Mrs. Hamilton has stuck with her husband under the worse possible conditions any marriage could experience.

      She has exhibited great courage, and an immense amount of personal grit that the average woman just doesn’t possess; therefore, it would not be unreasonable to assume that she is an above wife and mother, and not the conniving gold digger you describe.

      In fact, I believe that her conduct makes her a true paragon of virtue.

  4. yahmule - Aug 1, 2012 at 9:44 PM

    Well, pandering comments about god has always been a proven way to curry favor with Texans.

    • stex52 - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:32 PM

      As opposed to small-minded, condescending crap?

      • yahmule - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:35 PM

        No, that works equally well.

      • stex52 - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:48 PM

        Then you may have to fine tune. Not working.

      • yahmule - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:52 PM

        Here’s one from George Carlin:

        “You know the good part about all those executions in Texas? Fewer Texans.”

      • stex52 - Aug 1, 2012 at 11:04 PM

        Better. But only because you had to lift it from someone else.

  5. gd200799 - Aug 1, 2012 at 9:47 PM

    Wow, that is ridiculous ^.. That is a seriously douche bag thing to say.

    • jimeejohnson - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:01 PM

      Perhaps you forget two of Texas’ biggest God panderers: “Lil” gw bush League and that idiot Rick Another dick Perry.

      • skids003 - Aug 2, 2012 at 11:50 AM

        Yet you back Pelosi, Reid, Biden, Obama? What’s that say for you?

    • Old Gator - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:34 PM

      Hardly ridiculous, very appropriate and true. Of course scamming on superstition works really well in some of our other third-worldly states, usually in the southeast but Arizona is fast catching up with the Gulf states and shitholes like Murfreesboro and Kansas as redoubts of entrenched religious stupidity and bigotry.

      • stex52 - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:39 PM

        OG, give the man room to be sincere in his own beliefs, no matter how flawed he is.

      • Old Gator - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:04 AM

        Tex: I’m not criticizing Hamilton. I hope he’s OK (though why he would even say what he did if he wasn’t planning to explain himself is beyond me – all he’s done is open a can of worms for himself now). I’m just agreeing with the comment about the manipulation of religious ignorance and xenophobia in political applications.

      • Old Gator - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:09 AM

        PS – I don’t know if you were a regular here or not when I got into some heated exchanges with a couple of sanctimonious types who were reaming Hamilton for his spill from the wagon back in February or so. I reminded them that he was slugging it out with some pretty big demons and thought those critics ought to walk a mile in his shoes before waxing superior about his struggles.

        Hamilton’s incorporation of his Christian faith into his own troubled life, to give it some structure and discipline, that’s one thing. But “religious” politicians who pander to supersition and xenophobia, and who would like to force everyone to conform to their pole-up-the-ass morality whether they believed in their particular myths and fairy tales or not, make me puke.

  6. alligator8 - Aug 1, 2012 at 9:57 PM

    Maybe he forgot to eat his Chick-fil-A today

    • jimeejohnson - Aug 1, 2012 at 9:59 PM

      Now that’s a good one!

    • deathmonkey41 - Aug 2, 2012 at 8:40 AM

      STOP TALKING ABOUT FRIED CHICKEN, Dammit! It’s 8:40 in the morning and now I’m starving!

      • bravojawja - Aug 2, 2012 at 10:05 AM

        Chick-fil-A is not fried chicken. To be fried chicken, it must be on the bone with a crispy crust and served with mac & cheese and other vegetables. Chik-fil-A is made with crack. Sweet, sweet crack.

      • deathmonkey41 - Aug 2, 2012 at 11:22 AM

        Mmmmmmmmmm Crack Chicken….

      • foreverchipper10 - Aug 2, 2012 at 2:25 PM


        You just made me lol at my desk. I would say well done, but I suppose in this case I have to go with “Bravo!”

        In other news they need a god forsaken Chick-Fil-A in Northeast PA before I go ballistic.

  7. buffalomafia - Aug 1, 2012 at 9:58 PM


    • hammyofdoom - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:28 PM

      Yeah, totally overrated. So overrated that I’d LOVE for my team to take him off of the Rangers hands. You know, to be altruistic and helpful and such.

  8. brewcrewfan54 - Aug 1, 2012 at 9:58 PM

    Whatever it is it wont help him in free agency. Lets just hope his issues arent because of abuse or lead back to it.

  9. js20011041 - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:00 PM

    While I understand that faith is based on just that, faith, and not necessarily logic, I just really don’t understand the mindset that many devoutly religious people have. God gets all of the credit when things go right, but none of the blame when things go wrong. If god is responsible for Hamilton largely turning his life around, isn’t it logical that he would be to blame for his lapses and possibly for his marriage being in limbo and/or over?

    • jimeejohnson - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:02 PM

      Give it up, don’t try to understand. Just have faith. Whadya mean, “no”?

    • mreale77 - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:17 PM

      The Devil is to blame when things go sour, only God can right those wrongs for those who turn to him for guidance.

      • Old Gator - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:11 AM

        Well, I know the Devil can make a helluva blues guitarist out of you. As to the rest, it’s all a lot of nonsense.

      • deathmonkey41 - Aug 2, 2012 at 8:43 AM

        Pffffffttttttt. He couldn’t even beat Johnny at a fiddlin’ contest.

    • deadeyedesign23 - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:18 PM

      Or the real scenario: our successes and our failures are entirely our own.

      • brewcrewfan54 - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:24 PM

        Don’t say that. It makes too much sense.

  10. billymc75 - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:12 PM

    She’s pregnant again too

  11. randygnyc - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:16 PM

    Who said Josh turned his life around? A few months of sobriety (if in fact that’s even true) doesn’t undo all the previous damage to friends, family and team mates. Give it a few years and see if he’s still on the straight and narrow. He didn’t earn his reputation over night. He can’t fix it that quickly, either.

    • stex52 - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:34 PM

      Randy, I sincerely hope you are wrong. And we have to say that he is driven by a set of priorities he can’t meet and we don’t fully understand. Compared to a Mantle or a Ruth, the guy is nearly a saint. But that’s obviously not enough to set his mind straight.

      But I fear you may be right.

  12. miketreedy - Aug 1, 2012 at 10:18 PM

    Josh seems like he has trouble dealing with success. After being top no. pick he slides, after mvp season he slides, after home run contest he slides and again after great beginning of season and 4 home run game he slides again. It’s hard to deal with being on top of the world and not everyone can deal with the pressure of it.

    • Old Gator - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:15 AM

      After a guy falls to his death trying to catch a ball Josh threw him, he slides too – delayed reaction, since he was clearly trying to be strong for the guy’s kid. Who knows how much of an impact that episode had on him. It would have made a basket case out of me in Hamilton’s position, and I don’t drink at all, and haven’t popped a peyote button in 40 years.

      • natslady - Aug 2, 2012 at 6:55 AM

        I wondered about that, too. Seems to have faded from the “average” fan’s consciousness–I’m often asked, why don’t they shoot tee-shirts into the stands any more, and when I say, because of the guy that died in Texas, I get “What guy?” If I can’t get the image of Ian Desmond’s comebacker breaking Nicasio’s neck, it’s hard to imagine he can.

    • stlouis1baseball - Aug 2, 2012 at 10:38 AM

      Great point(s) Mike.

  13. gotampabay52 - Aug 1, 2012 at 11:02 PM

    He did so much drugs when he was with us, he is such an up hill battle. He isn’t an addict he is a junkie. Slept with women to get tattoos, to get crack, to get RIDES BACK TO BATTUNG PRACTICES, he was an interesting guy in weight room the amount of sweet for working out with little amount of weights next day was a beast wild to see the two sides of him wish him well but a junkie not an addict

    • js20011041 - Aug 1, 2012 at 11:11 PM

      Kids, don’t do crack.

    • proobone - Aug 1, 2012 at 11:28 PM


      • hittfamily - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:31 AM

        Just when I thought the spelling couldn’t get any worse, I get yelled at with poor spelling.

  14. gotampabay52 - Aug 1, 2012 at 11:06 PM

    What is wrong with Tennessee there little gator

    • Old Gator - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:16 AM

      You haven’t been keeping track of the little Islamophobic festival of hate and ignorance going on in Murfreesboro? Google it. Straight out of Inherit the Wind, only uglier.

  15. mianfr - Aug 1, 2012 at 11:08 PM

    Honestly, he strikes me as someone who can’t hold himself accountable for his own actions. No patience for people like that.

    Good job screwing up free agency.

  16. tjg25 - Aug 1, 2012 at 11:09 PM

    Once scum always scum.

  17. proobone - Aug 1, 2012 at 11:25 PM

    Hey this guy is a human being. I can’t understand some of the bullshit written here.What if this was your son, brother wife etc. Some of you sound like you are from some third world country where thier is no respect for human life. I would not wish drug dependency on anyone. Take it easy .Hope everything comes out OK. I can empathise with his pain.

    • raysfan1 - Aug 1, 2012 at 11:40 PM

      Too much schadenfreude from some, especially those who dislike publically vocal Christians.

    • js20011041 - Aug 1, 2012 at 11:46 PM

      I think part of it is the fact that Josh Hamilton has literally every advantage in the world, yet cannot stay clean. Sympathy goes only so far. How many recovering addicts have a full time babysitter (paid by their employer) to keep them out of trouble? What would Hamilton’s life be like if he wasn’t a wealthy baseball player? Would he be clean? I’m not sure that any of us can answer that. A large part of Hamilton’s contribution to society revolves around his occupation. If Hamilton wasn’t a very talented baseball player, he wouldn’t have nearly the resources to help fight his addictions. If Hamilton isn’t a baseball player, I think that it’s very reasonable to suggest that he would be a person that would be unable to hold down any kind of steady employment, not to mention the marital issues. I think that it’s very reasonable to suggest that Hamilton’s specific occupation and unique skill set are the only things making Hamilton a contributor to society rather than a sponge of community resources.

      • raysfan1 - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:33 AM

        Well, you are certainly correct that nobody knows for sure what his life would be like if he weren’t a famous/wealthy athlete.

        It’s still true that too many seem to be watching for him to fail, to actually enjoy it, and to bring up his statements of faith as either hypocritical or ignorant based on his failings.

    • hittfamily - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:51 AM

      Join his fan club and write him a sympathy card if the only thing you want to hear is people wishing him well with his alleged problems. I can only hear about an uneducated redneck bible thumper with no redeeming qualities for so long before I become disillusioned with whatever he is attempting to portray.

      What is the difference between Josh Hamilton and Matt Bush? They both were born with incredible talent. They both developed drug and alcohol addictions. They both relapsed multipe times. Hell, at least Matt Bush wasn’t a crack addict who abandoned his family.

      The difference is that Josh Hamilton is a better driver.

  18. gotampabay52 - Aug 1, 2012 at 11:51 PM


    • cur68 - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:31 AM

      Just throw a period in there once in a while, man. Is that so hard? Honestly…

      • raysfan1 - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:36 AM

        Spell checking and grammar could help too.

      • protius - Aug 2, 2012 at 7:49 AM

        Maybe a comma or two, and please; shit-can the caps.

    • raysfan1 - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:42 AM

      Pretty much everyone already knows how bad he messed up his life in Tampa and that he still battles his demons daily. He has expressed his regrets for how he lived his life as a member of the Rays organization. I for one choose to believe he is sincere in that. Certainly, if he had not been able to clean up his act, he would not be in MLB today.

    • qacm - Aug 2, 2012 at 3:11 AM

      Caps Unlock is your friend.

    • stlouis1baseball - Aug 2, 2012 at 10:44 AM

      Good lord Man! Did you just g’i’t to workin’ with this here new fangled internet thing?
      Just a few things to think about while getting to know your keyboard…
      When it is locked ALL words will be capitalized.
      You can use them to separate thoughts and give clarity during the course of a sentence.
      You use these at the end of EACH sentence. It helps distinguish one sentence from another.
      It also allows people to better comprehend what the hell it is you are trying to communicate.

    • WhenMattStairsIsKing - Aug 2, 2012 at 6:08 PM


      • protius - Aug 2, 2012 at 8:32 PM

        Bravo, an accurate parody of gotampabay52’s juvenile writing style and personal douche baggery.

  19. thatyankeedude - Aug 1, 2012 at 11:54 PM

    I hope Hamilton can get stronger from this current situation and move on, God is a merciful and forgiving God and I think that Hamilton is a good man and God will be there to guide him through. Good luck josh

    • hittfamily - Aug 2, 2012 at 1:00 AM

      Please read my biography.

      Virgins of conquered lands, 1st born non-Jewish Egyptians, Former residents of Sodom, …..

    • deathmonkey41 - Aug 2, 2012 at 11:38 AM

      Odd, Slayer has taught me that God Hates Us All.

  20. vincentbojackson - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:06 AM

    The Reds gave him a chance when no one else would and he repaid them by bolting the first chance he got. Now he’s getting ready to bolt Texas after they supported him during his most recent troubles.

    The risk / reward with this guy should scare off any sane GM in the game.

    • Ari Collins - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:48 AM

      Uhh… didn’t the Reds trade him?

      • raysfan1 - Aug 2, 2012 at 1:00 AM

        Yes, they did.

        It’s also true that a professional athlete only owes loyalty to his employer while still employed. Once he has fulfilled his contract honorably, he has every right to file for free agency and go anywhere he likes.

        GMs are certainly aware that signing Hamilton comes with significant risk as well as potential reward, but playing out his contract is not something any will take as a red flag.

    • proobone - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

      The Red’a traded him for Volquez. In addition Griffey Jr.,Dunn and several other players were jealous because the press always wanted to interview him and not them. Very immature. He is one of the best ballplayers I’ve ever watched, reminds me of Mickey Mantle , problems and all.

  21. throughthewickets - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:21 AM

    If there’s a God, he needs to slap him silly.

    Whether it is a divorce, swinging the wrong stick, a bad tattoo or feeling sad for Chick-fil-A(##hole), the drama is not worth the investment. Since July, he has made Don Wert look like Mickey Mantle.

  22. gotampabay52 - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:26 AM

    Vince bo knows whatever your name you say the Reds did everything are you kidding me look at what Tampa put up with and what Texas is going through Cinn didnt do shit and right now Cinn should worry about the football players getting arrested and cheerleaders you can say you did anything for Josh stupid Cinn fans

    • cur68 - Aug 2, 2012 at 2:18 AM

      Dude you got no leg to stand on calling anyone stupid.

  23. dkphilly1122 - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:29 AM

    You’re all Haters calling him a Junkie and acting like you’s know him personally or like you’s have been thru addiction or what he has. Addiction isn’t something people go looking for in life… happens though way too often. So stop hating on Josh and come back to reality, you’re no better than a “Junkie” by talking about someone else. Let the man live his life, HIS LIFE.

    • hittfamily - Aug 2, 2012 at 1:05 AM

      His life, HIS LIFE and his lifestyle is payed for by fans like me and you’s guys. He could always retire out of the spotlight. I’d give him a dollar when I ran into him on the southside of some city.

      • seeinred87 - Aug 2, 2012 at 10:10 AM

        With thinking like that, I’ll bet cops love you.

  24. cowboys8819 - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:36 AM

    Whatever all you people that have negative things to say about this guy need to get a life! This guy is a stud and will work out of his slump and all this media bs will go away. The guy has made drastic changes in his life and if there is another hurdle in his way just wish the man luck and hope he jumps it like all the other ones he has! Quit being negative and think like family people or just human beings and leave all your negative comments to yourself! This crap really does get old everybody just wanting athletes to fail because they are jealous they aren’t in their position and aren’t successful in life themselves!

  25. sincitybonobo - Aug 2, 2012 at 12:37 AM

    Bad timing for Hamilton- and his agent.

    Given his entire package- talent, demons, age, health,etc.- what is he going to get on the open market? Were I a GM, I wouldn’t want to be the one to sign him to a long-term deal- too many potential landmines.

    Is Andre Ethier (5yr/$85mil) the starting point? Will anyone make that much a commitment in years? Two years with an incentive-based option sounds realistic. The 24-hour “accountability partner” clause seems to be non-negotiable.

    Whatever is in his head, it’s getting expensive. Solving the problem or finding a way to compartmentalize it for three months should be a priority for him.

    • fuddpucker - Aug 2, 2012 at 1:40 AM

      Fix his problem in 3 months?

      It’s almost impossible to fix “his problem” in 3, 5, or 10 years.

    • sincitybonobo - Aug 2, 2012 at 2:06 AM

      Reading between the lines, it appears to have something to do with his family situation. I wasn’t suggesting his addiction can be cured or compartmentalized in a couple months. But, if there ever were three months that demand his utmost professional focus, it is now.

      • fuddpucker - Aug 2, 2012 at 5:06 AM

        Dis Dude’s gotz mo probs than you can shake a stick at.

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