From beat writer Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram comes word that the Rangers believe outfielder Josh Hamilton might be playing through a sports hernia. Not just a tweaked a groin muscle.
Hamilton has registered an underwhelming .250/.264/.354 batting line this postseason, though he does have eight RBI in 12 games. No tests have been run to confirm the Rangers’ suspicion, and that probably won’t change until after the World Series.
Hamilton has committed to playing through the discomfort. And if he needs surgery in the offseason, so be it. The 30-year-old slugger is batting third and playing center field Saturday night in Game 3.
Here’s Rangers general manager Jon Daniels, speaking about Hamilton’s injury on Saturday afternoon:
“We’ve go three to five games left. After that, even if (he does have a hernia), it doesn’t change how we will handle it at this point. He says he’s OK to play, doctors say they’re OK if he’s playing, he’s out there in the lineup.”
The seven-game Fall Classic is tied 1-1, but the next three contests will take place in Arlington, Texas.
Leonys Martin, outfielder for the Seattle Mariners, testified yesterday that he feared for his life after he was smuggled from Cuba by a group of men prosecutors say worked for a sports agent and a baseball trainer currently on trial for human trafficking in Miami.
Martin took the stand at the trial of Bartolo Hernandez and Julio Estrada, who face felony charges. He said that, after getting to Mexico from Cuba, men threatened to take him away. There was a kidnapping attempt against one of the men who had taken him from Cuba as well. Martin said that, eventually, he crossed the U.S.-Mexico border into Texas without any valid papers because his life was in danger and his safety was at risk.
Players like Martin who fled Cuba often hole up in Mexico while waiting to be declared free agents by Major League Baseball. There is pitched competition to sign agreements with the players in question, seeking to obtain promises of a cut of future baseball earnings for their services. Those promises can come under the threat of violence. Eventually, Martin promised to pay Hernandez and Estrada, but ceased paying them later, fomenting a lawsuit from them. In the wake of the suit, the allegations of threats and smuggling arose, leading to this trial.
Martin has been late to Mariners camp as a result of having to testify. He’ll likely report in the next day or so. The trial continues.
Josh Hamilton was already a long shot to make the Texas Rangers roster, but his shot got even longer today, as he left camp to have his reconstructed left knee examined after experiencing pain.
As Jeff Wilson reports, Hamilton felt discomfort in the knee during the Rangers’ first full-squad spring training workout yesterday. Hamilton has had 10 knee operations in career. Which is a lot of knee operations in case you were unaware.
You have to wish good luck to Hamilton, but at the same time you have to be realistic. The guy has not played in the major leagues since 2015 and even then he didn’t play well, hitting .253 with eight home runs and 25 RBIs in 50 games. He appeared in one game last year for Double-A Frisco, on April 30. He’ll be paid $24 million this year, mostly by the Angels. One suspects that this will likewise be his last spring training.