Josh Hamilton is likely to be activated off the disabled list Tuesday, September 1 when major league rosters expand, but it sounds like he’s going to be limited to pinch-hitting duties for a while.
According to Stefan Stevenson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the veteran outfielder has been taking batting practice and playing catch without issue but has not been cleared yet for running. “It feels OK to throw and hit on the knee,” Hamilton told the Star-Telegram. “I just haven’t gotten to the important part where I can run or jog. That’s the next step.”
Texas has won 12 of its last 16 games and opened play Sunday with a 1 1/2 game lead on the second American League Wild Card spot.
Hamilton, 34, has hit .254/.296/.430 with six home runs and 21 RBI in 38 games this season.
Josh Hamilton’s second stint with the Rangers is now on hold, as the former MVP outfielder has been placed on the disabled list with left knee inflammation.
Hamilton has mostly struggled for the Rangers, hitting .254 with six homers and a .726 OPS in 38 games since they re-acquired him from the Angels in a contract dump. For some context, Hamilton had a .741 OPS in two seasons with the Angels.
He’s shown good power with 13 extra-base hits in 142 at-bats, but Hamilton’s lack of plate discipline and strike-zone control continue to be major weaknesses with an ugly 40/9 K/BB ratio.
Will Venable, freshly acquired from the Padres, will step into the lineup in Hamilton’s place.
Via the Rangers’ executive vice president of communications, John Blake …
Venable was thought to be available at the July 31 trade deadline, but nothing wound up happening. Now he heads to Texas in a waiver trade. The outfielder showed great promise in 2013, tallying 22 home runs and 22 stolen bases in 151 games, but he’s batted just .238/.300/.347 over the last two seasons.
Venable was the longest-tenured player on the Padres, per MLB.com’s Corey Brock.
He’ll give the Rangers depth while Josh Hamilton recovers from a lingering knee injury.