Tag: Josh Hamilton

Josh Hamilton

Report: Angels, Rangers agree on Josh Hamilton trade


Update #5 (8:21 PM EST): Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY reports that Hamilton is giving up some money to make the trade work. The lack of state taxes in Texas makes this work. Nightengale adds that the Angels would still be on the hook for about $68 million.

Update #4 (7:18 PM EST): Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reports that the Rangers are expected to cover $15 million of the $83 million remaining on Hamilton’s contract. That means the Angels cover $68 million.

Update #3 (7:12 PM EST): Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports that the two sides have reached an agreement. They’re now just hammering out some ancillary details.

Update #2 (6:35 PM EST): Jon Morosi of FOX Sports hears from a source that Hamilton is in Houston now and is expected to begin full baseball activities with the Rangers next week if the trade with the Angels is finalized.

Update (6:05 PM EST): MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan reports that the Rangers are “close” to trading for Hamilton. If it is completed, the deal will likely be announced on Monday.

Sports Illustrated broke the news that the Angels are expected to part ways with outfielder Josh Hamilton. Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports is hearing the same from his sources. Hamilton will be moved to another team via a trade, Rosenthal adds.

Given everything that has transpired since Hamilton had a relapse with drug use, this is not a particularly surprising piece of news. Owner Arte Moreno, GM Jerry DiPoto, and manager Mike Scioscia each made public comments critical of Hamilton, a sign the team had had enough.

Hamilton, 33, has three years and $83 million remaining on his contract. The financial aspects of the deal are not yet known. Hamilton is currently sidelined, recovering from offseason shoulder surgery.

We’ll have more on this as it develops.

Rob Manfred was asked again about the leaks in the Josh Hamilton case. His answers weren’t much better.

manfred getty

This is kind of fun.

Some of us dead-enders who still think the Joint Drug Agreement means something were a bit perturbed that someone — we don’t know who! — leaked information about Josh Hamilton’s drug relapse to the press. And leaked about the process going down during his disciplinary hearings. And about what the Angels thought about it all. You can read our dead-ender outrage about it here, and about how Major League Baseball said it would not investigate the leaks here.

Flash forward to today when MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred appeared on NBC Sports Radio’s “Under Center” with McNabb and Malone. It’s a good show! I’m on it every week, but obviously the Commissioner is much more important. Our ex-quarterback friends asked the Commish about the stuff he’d expect on sports radio like attendance and pace-of-play and the recent fisticuffs in Royals games. Manfred answered those questions in a pretty polished matter. He’s had these things on his mind all week.

But then Mark Malone shifted gears and asked him why the league hasn’t disciplined anyone with the Angels for leaking Hamilton’s business. Malone: a man after my own heart! And while I don’t have the audio handy in embeddable form just yet, I listened to it. And know that Manfred, to my ears anyway, lost a bit of his polished tone, probably because he didn’t expect to be asked this. Mostly because no one else seems to be asking it. Here’s what he said, though:

“The assumption that the leak came from the Angels is one that may not be correct. We have tried mightily to determine exactly how that information became public. We’ve been unable to do so. That’s often the case with respect to press leaks. As you know, members of the media and sources — a little difficult sometimes, but you know, a number of people knew about the relevant facts here, not just the Angels, and we really haven’t been able to establish any misconduct on the part of the club.”

It’s quite a leap from saying, two weeks ago, that the league would not investigate the leaks to now saying that they’ve “tried mightily” to do so. How one concludes that they can’t establish misconduct without actually mounting an investigation is beyond me.

But what do I know? All I did for several years in my career was assist and in some cases run internal investigations of companies at the behest of management. It’s more art than science, but I know this much: when an investigator is tasked with figuring something out from people over whom they have actual authority — like, say, MLB has over the Angels’ front office — it’s not the hardest job ever. At the very least you can find out — before even getting to the substance — the universe of people who had the information that was leaked. And then it’s just a matter of talking to them in conference rooms. Contrary to what you see on TV and in movies, people aren’t very good liars and most of them don’t like to lie.

But again, that’s just if you’re super inclined to figure something out. Something like, say, a violation of a provision of the Joint Drug Agreement that, on its very face, is described as “essential to the Program’s success.” I mean, really, why would you even have a meeting about that?

And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

Jose Bautista

I haven’t added them all up nor have I researched the matter, but if I just had to guess, with my gut, based on doing these recaps every morning, I’d guess that more runs were scored last night than any night with 15 ballgames going in, say, a year. Maybe a year and a half. Could be wrong — could be way wrong — but it sort of feels like it.

I’d also say that, based on the couple of game stories I read, someone fired the cliche machine up to 11. But hey, it’s hard to be creative on a Tuesday night. Anyway:

Blue Jays 13, Orioles 6: So Bud Norris isn’t having a great time. Rocked for nine runs in two and a third, which follows on two previous not great outings, including an eight-run bleed-out against the Orioles in his first start of the year. On the year: twenty earned runs on 18 hits in ten and a third. In the offseason the O’s were trying to deal Ubaldo Jimenez but no one wanted him so they thought about trading Bud Norris instead. Always go with your second instinct, I guess. Two homers for Edwin Encarnacion. Oh, and Jose Bautista hit his 250th career homer that (a) came after O’s pitcher Jason Garcia nearly hit him, so (b) Bautista admired the shot, stared down Norris and then flipped his bat, causing the O’s to get all feisty and mad. Adam Jones even said, unironically, that Bautista needs to “respect the game” afterward.

Phillies 7, Marlins 3: The Phillies actually had an offense last night, led by Ryan Howard, who hit a go-ahead two-run homer in the sixth. Howard was 2-for-3 with a walk, in fact. So I guess it just so happens that our friend Ryan here was only MOSTLY dead. And, as we all know, there’s a big difference between mostly dead and all dead. Mostly dead is slightly alive. With all dead, well, with all dead there’s usually only one thing you can do: eat $50 million of his contract and ship him to the American League.

Royals 6, Twins 5: Mike Moustakas hit a two-run homer and drove in the go-ahead run with a single in the eighth inning. After the game, Ned Yost was asked about how he stuck with Moustakas over the past couple of years despite all of his slumps:

“You almost want to stand up on this table and yell, `I told you so!” Yost said, flashing a wry grin. “But I’m not. I’m not an I-told-you-so kind of guy.”

Well, you just told-us-so, Ned, so you kind of are.

Angels 14, Athletics 1: Johnny Giavotella drove in four and Kole Calhoun had four hits, including a three-run homer. After the game, Giavotella said this:

“From day one in spring training, this team has welcomed me with open arms. They believe in me, and it’s great to have guys that rally around you and root for you”

Somewhere, in exile, Josh Hamilton sheds a single tear as mournful music plays.

Astros 6, Mariners 3: I love the intro to this AP gamer:

Collin McHugh continued to linger, never getting knocked around enough to where his night needed to end . . .

I feel like that was a lyrical passage to at least six songs in the mid-90s.

Jose Altuve hit a go-ahead three-run double on an 0-2 pitch in the eighth inning. The Astros are 8-6 and sit atop the AL West, by the way.

Cubs 9, Pirates 8: Addison Russell made his big league debut and finished 0-for-5 with three strikeouts. But that’s OK, because (a) the Cubs won anyway; and (b) Kris Bryant made a debut that was just as poopy on Friday and all he’s done since then is knock the friggin cover off the ball and get on base like crazy. Starlin Castro chipped in as well, going 3-for-5 with a homer and four driven in.

Rangers 7, Diamondbacks 1: Prince Fielder homered, doubled and drove in three. Asked what he’s doing, he said he is “just looking for a pitch [he] can drive.” I can’t believe he’d reveal such top secret information like that. Opposing teams read these game stories, you know. Fielder on the year: .386/.435/.509 with nine driven in. Guess he was just mostly dead too.

Giants 6, Dodgers 2: The third only mostly dead performance of the night, with Tim Lincecum allowing only one run in six innings to snag the win. He also provided another great cliche on the night when he revealed that his secret was “making good pitches.” Huh. “So, kids: if you’re a young pitcher out there, make good pitches. Not bad ones. That’s a tip from your old friend, Tim,” Lincecum did not add.

Reds 16, Brewers 10: Two grand slams for the Reds — Jay Bruce and Todd Frazier — and two homers from Zack Cozart powered up the Reds. Elian Herrera hit a grand slam for the Brewers and drove in five overall. RIP all the pitchers in this game. The Reds have scored 22 in two games against Milwaukee. Welcome back to 1999.

Nationals 2, Cardinals 1: One of the few pitchers duels of the night. And should’ve been lower scoring than it was, except Drew Storen blew the save in a 1-0 game in the ninth. Yunel Escobar’s walkoff homer in the 10th, however, saved his bacon.

Yankees 5, Tigers 2: Nathan Eovaldi allowed one run on eight hits and a walk while pitching into the eighth inning. The Yankees turned four double plays behind him. Chris Young and Stephen Drew hit solo homers in the seventh.

Mets 7, Braves 1: Trevor Cahill didn’t throw strikes, got behind in counts and the Mets sat back waiting for his get-me-over pitches, which they smacked all over the dang place. This is not a repeat from, like, every Trevor Cahill start of the past couple of years. Catcher Kevin Plawecki made his debut, filling in for the injured Travis d’Arnaud. He got two hits, scored twice and threw out a runner trying to advance. That’s nine wins in a row for the Mets.

Red Sox 1, Rays 0: Wade Miley and four relievers combined on the shutout. The game’s only run came on a throwing error that should’ve been an inning-ending double play. Mookie Betts’ hard slide helped throw second baseman Ryan Brett off balance, however.

Indians 6, White Sox 2: Carlos Carrasco made his first start since being hit in the face by a comebacker. He seemed just dandy, striking out eight in five innings on a cold night. The pen took over from there, allowing only one run in four innings of work. In all, Indians pitchers struck out 15 White Sox.

Padres 7, Rockies 6: Derek Norris hit a tiebreaking, two-run double in the eighth to help the Padres complete a come-from-behind victory. Clint Barmes homered and Wil Myers had three hits and the Padres have won six of seven. They’re 10-5 overall and six of those wins have been come-from-behind jobs.

The Angels have a comeback plan for Josh Hamilton

Josh Hamilton

Over the weekend it was reported that the Angels and Josh Hamilton were in talks that would, somehow, resolve his situation. Those talks could include trade talks. Or talks about how and when to let him rejoin the team. Money could’ve been on the table. They could’ve been adversarial or not.

But today the Los Angeles Times is reporting that, whatever else may happen to Hamilton — and the team going after him for money is apparently still on the table — the Angels are trying to put in place a path back to the team for him. Bill Shaikin:

Under the tentative plan, Hamilton would report to the Angels’ Arizona training complex for two to three weeks of work with the team’s extended spring program. He would then proceed to a minor league rehabilitation assignment and could rejoin the Angels thereafter.

“Thereafter” being early June.

This would be a lot more encouraging, I think, if Arte Moreno or someone in charge there would drop the silly farce in which they think they can void Hamilton’s deal because of his drug lapse and if they’d make some sort of gesture which suggests that (a) they care about the guy as a person; and (b) might have a scintilla of regret for the way they’ve trashed him publicly in the past month or two. But as it is, this comeback plan seems just as premised on the fact that C.J. Cron and Collin Cowgill aren’t hitting well, so maybe they should hedge their bets.

Which has sort of been the thread all along here for the Angels, actually. Their anger at Hamilton is due to his specific facts — he makes a lot of money and hasn’t played well — rather than any set of principles or scruples they have as club. Now, his potential return to the team is, it seems, premised on the fact that he may be a less-odious option than Cron or Cowgill, not because allowing him to rejoin the team is the right and proper thing to do.