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Angels won’t change clubhouse alcohol policy after signing Josh Hamilton

Feb 15, 2013, 1:20 PM EDT

Rangers' Hamilton is doused with ginger ale as he celebrates with teammates after they won their Major League Baseball's ALCS playoff series against the Yankees in Arlington Reuters

A few years ago Josh Hamilton avoided the Rangers’ clubhouse celebration because beer and champagne were being sprayed (and consumed) all over the place and later the Rangers switched to ginger ale so Hamilton would feel comfortable taking part in the festivities despite his history of alcohol and drug problems.

It remains to be seen how the Angels will celebrate if/when they get to the playoffs or win a postseason series, but Hamilton’s new team doesn’t plan to alter their overall clubhouse alcohol policy:

Pretty standard across baseball, although certainly not standard in other professions. What percentage of people work at a place where drinking alcohol is not only allowed, but the alcohol is actually provided by their employers? Even us bloggers have to buy our own beer if we wanted to spend the work day drinking*.

* Hypothetically.

  1. tkbman - Feb 15, 2013 at 1:38 PM

    You should work at a commercial photo studio. Beer thirty rolls around almost every evening.

    • Reflex - Feb 16, 2013 at 2:25 PM

      …Or the software industry. The mini fridge full of beer sits a few feet in front of my desk in the team area. I don’t think I’ve worked for a tech company that did not provide alcohol or have a policy that after 5 its ok to drink…

      Oddly enough, some of the developers seem to write better code once they start drinking.

  2. jibzek - Feb 15, 2013 at 1:40 PM

    Maybe he can have gravy and fried chicken? Help him put some weight back on?

  3. xmatt0926x - Feb 15, 2013 at 1:42 PM

    Don’t think you can really fault the Angels on that stance. How much do you alter an overall policy that affects many people for one adult who has potential issues. You’re already paying a hired “assistant” to follow him around with the team. There are plenty of former alcoholics and former drug addicts in the world who have to take responsibility for themselves and fight off temptation. I’m sure if Josh Hamilton struggles with the availability of beer in the clubhouse than he can make his own adjustments to deal with it and he likely would prefer that anyway. If the rest of his teammates like having the alcohol available then I’m sure he wouldn’t be comfortable being the reason they all lost that chance to have it.

    • IdahoMariner - Feb 15, 2013 at 2:56 PM

      but, again, there really aren’t many professions that have alcohol at work.

    • clydeserra - Feb 15, 2013 at 3:33 PM

      how many teams have had their starter for the day get killed in a DUI accident after the game?

  4. randygnyc - Feb 15, 2013 at 1:49 PM

    What could go wrong?

  5. Kevin S. - Feb 15, 2013 at 2:08 PM

    The Angels shouldn’t alter their alcohol policy because they signed Josh Hamilton. The Angels should alter their alcohol policy because of the casual culture baseball has with alcohol abuse and driving.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Feb 15, 2013 at 7:25 PM

      You’d think a team that employed Nick Adenhart would understand this, but I digress…

  6. illadelphiasphinest - Feb 15, 2013 at 2:19 PM

    Good the rest of the team shouldn’t have to suffer, and not be able to celebrate because Hamilton can’t control his addictions. If he doesn’t wanna be around it then simply leave and don’t put yourself in a position where you could get yourself in trouble.

  7. larrytsg - Feb 15, 2013 at 2:32 PM

    Hmmmmm… makes you wonder how he can become a “clubhouse leader” if he’s surrounded by the subject of his addiction.

    I agree with Kevin S, where if you have a problem with a player DUI after a game, it’s not the club that provided the alcohol to him.

    One last thing… as soon as I left the world of defense contract engineering and started working for companies where the DoD was not your Daddy…. beer at 4:00 on Fridays was a common, if not required, meeting to attend.

  8. Matt Aromando - Feb 15, 2013 at 2:33 PM

    I work at a marketing company where they give us beer if we make it to 5:00 on a Friday. Still to be determined what we’ll do if we ever clinch the playoffs or win a postseason series, too.

  9. Norm B - Feb 15, 2013 at 2:34 PM

    We are still a private company, so we have beer-thirty every Friday at 3:30. I am sure that will change after we go public.

  10. IdahoMariner - Feb 15, 2013 at 3:04 PM

    i love that scioscia makes the distinction between beer and hard alcohol, as though that matters. alcohol is alcohol, dude.

    and having a friday afternoon beer date at your company, while really rude to anyone in your company who is struggling with addiction, is a lot different than forcing an employee to choose between celebrating the ultimate moment of success in their field with the co-workers they achieved it with and staying free of a crippling addiction.

    and it is, really, not cool to do it at a company either – people other than those who work in the alcohol distribution/serving industry should be able to engage in activities during work that are meant to be a reward or meant to encourage bonding etc, without compromising their health. if you are an alcoholic and you choose to work in a bar or serve in a restaurant or at a stadium, well, you are still just making bad choices. but if you are doing a job that is unrelated to alcohol, you ought to be able to expect to be free of it at work.

  11. aiede - Feb 15, 2013 at 3:34 PM

    How dare MLB’s players promote the culture of alcohol?

    Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go to a game at Coors Field or Busch Stadium or maybe catch the Brewers at Miller Park.

  12. hughhansen - Feb 15, 2013 at 3:37 PM

    I think the no hard liquor rule is BS.

    (I like how they don’t even bring up wine, as if that no one would even consider drinking it.)

  13. pipkin42 - Feb 15, 2013 at 4:32 PM

    Universities provide alcohol to us academics. It makes up for how poorly we’re paid, or something.

    • pipkin42 - Feb 15, 2013 at 4:34 PM

      Seriously. You want grad students to attend? There better be wine.

  14. jwbiii - Feb 15, 2013 at 6:35 PM

    I had a friend who worked for Philip Morris back when they owned Miller. Every morning he had a six pack in his mini-fridge (yes, every office had a mini-fridge) and a pack of Winstons on his desk.

  15. historiophiliac - Feb 15, 2013 at 7:28 PM

    The Tigers did not go alcohol-free b/c of Miggy’s issues. Last year in the post-season, he celebrated w/ fans and gave interviews on the field while the others were dousing one another in the clubhouse. Hamilton isn’t the only one who faces said issue.

  16. seitz26 - Feb 15, 2013 at 9:26 PM

    Well, we’re a small firm, but I just got home from the bar we have in our office after downing about five Pacificos. All paid for by the partners. We have a fridge filled with soda, and a fridge filled with beer and wine, though no one usually partakes until Friday at 5:00. Of course, it helps that we’re in the Chicago Loop and no one is driving home. But yeah, to answer your question, a very small percentage that includes me.

  17. manchestermiracle - Feb 15, 2013 at 11:19 PM

    The culture of alcohol is amazing. Church mentioned the most ironic fact of this situation: Adenhart killed in 2009 by a drunk driver. Show me where all these athletes have drivers to take them home after games they win (like they don’t “celebrate” after losses).

    I make a lot of money off of wrecks, many caused by drunk driving, but I’d happily give it up if people pulled their heads out of their asses and stopped believing “I’m okay to drive, I only had a couple.”

  18. louhudson23 - Feb 16, 2013 at 4:05 AM

    Drinking and driving and drinking are far from the same thing. Beer in the clubhouse is no big thing to me. Players routinely clambering into their cars after several beers is another thing entirely. Busting their balls and implementing a program about doing so would be a very worthwhile endeavor for any ball club. But I think the same thing about your average Golf course/Country club setting……

  19. juliath83 - Feb 16, 2013 at 7:08 PM

    This is of course assuming that the Angels will be doing any celebrating with Hamilton on the roster

  20. losanginsight - Feb 18, 2013 at 12:56 PM

    Jalos need to worry about beating the A’s before they can pop bottles.

  21. raidergreg2000 - Feb 25, 2013 at 2:19 PM

    Have a drink on me Josh!

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