Josh Hamilton to start hitting off a tee Wednesday

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Josh Hamilton, who has been shelved for three weeks with a broken humerus sustained sliding into home plate, will begin swinging off a tee Wednesday, the Rangers revealed today.

Hamilton has been playing catch and shagging flyballs in his rehab and is considered about a week ahead of schedule. The Rangers originally said he’d be out 6-8 weeks with the injury. If he can avoid any setbacks, a return during the May 23-29 homestand against the White Sox and Royals seems possible.

With Hamilton sidelined, the Rangers have alternated Julio Borbon and David Murphy in center field, with Mitch Moreland shifting back and forth between first base and the right field. Borbon could be at risk of being sent back to the minors when Hamilton returns, though he has some time left to secure his spot.

Scooter Gennett upset with Reds over lack of communication regarding contract extension

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Reds second baseman Scooter Gennett can become a free agent after the 2019 season. He has become one of baseball’s better second basemen since the Reds claimed him off waivers from the Brewers in March 2017. Over the last two years, he has hit 50 homers with an .859 OPS. The only second basemen with a better OPS (min. 700 plate appearances) since the start off the 2017 season are José Altuve (.900) and Daniel Murphy (.876).

Gennett is upset the Reds haven’t been in contact with him to discuss a contract extension, John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. Gennett said, “We’ve definitely opened it up. They know I want to play here. They know I enjoy playing on this team. I enjoy the fans. I enjoy the coaching staff. I enjoy my teammates. They know all that. There’s nothing else to tell them at this point. It’s waiting for them to come back, which they have not.” He added, “(We’ve) heard absolutely nothing. Zero.”

As Fay points out, Gennett was born in Cincinnati and grew up a Reds fan, so this is a cinch for the club if it makes any effort. The Reds presently have just $58 million in 25-man roster obligations for the 2020 season.