Rangers hoping to lock up outfielder Josh Hamilton

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We already know that the Rangers will make an effort to lock up ace left-hander Cliff Lee this offseason.  Now new CEO and managing partner Chuck Greenberg is saying that he also plans to work out an extension with outfielder Josh Hamilton in the very near future.  This according to the Dallas Morning News.

“Keeping Josh here for the long haul is essential,” Greenberg said simply. “His performance on the field speaks for itself.”

Hamilton, 29, is under team control through 2012, but the Rangers may want to buy out his remaining arbitration-eligible years with an extension that also extends into his first few seasons of free agency.  If he keeps up his torrid pace at the plate, it could save them money in the long run.

The former No. 1 overall pick is batting a ridiculous .364/.411/.639 this season with 26 home runs and 80 RBI in 440 at-bats.  He also has eight stolen bases and is a strong defensive outfielder despite his bulky size.  Injuries have been a problem in the past, but it’s hard to top a healthy Hamilton when it comes to ranking American League outfielders.

Giancarlo Stanton to begin rehab assignment tonight

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Giancarlo Stanton will begin a minor league rehab assignment Monday with High-A Tampa. That according to the team’s Tweet to that effect.

Stanton has been on the injured list since April 1 due to a left biceps strain and a left shoulder strain sustained in what Aaron Boone called a “funky swing” at the time. Figure he’ll need a week or so of minor league games to get back to playing speed.

At the time Stanton’s injury seemed to be a catastrophic thing for the team’s chances, but after a sluggish start the Yankees have been on fire for weeks and now sit in first place in the American League East.

Still, getting Stanton back will be a big boost for the New York lineup. He’s hit a few homers in his time, I hear.