This is interesting. Today, at Rangers camp in Surprise, Arizona, Josh Hamilton told reporters that he sent a video of him hitting back in March, presumably to show them that he was healthy. Hamilton said, “I sent video to the Rangers of me hitting March 9, full-go,” according to Jeff Fletcher of the OC Register.
The first questions this raises, of course, is one of tampering of some kind. As in, were Hamilton and/or the Rangers trying to get something done back then? Maybe not, based on the circumstances:
The Fort Worth Star-Telegram cited a source saying Hamilton’s video was sent to former teammate Michael Young, now a special assistant, and it was just two friends exchanging video, rather than Hamilton trying to manipulate a trade.
Michael Young is important, but he’s not making decisions for the Rangers. And, of course, Hamilton was persona non grata with the Angels. At most, it seems, this was a “see, I’m healthy” sort of thing. Which Hamilton backed at his press conference yesterday when he said that if he had been allowed to be with the Angels and rehab during spring training he’d be playing now.
Still, as Fletcher notes, the Angels may not be happy about his even if they’re not commenting on it now:
However, it’s not likely the Angels front office would have been happy with Hamilton sending the video if they knew about it. If Hamilton was lobbying the Rangers to acquire him, it could have affected what little leverage the Angels may have to had to make the best deal possible.
Rather rich, one thinks, given that the Angels were doing more than anyone could expect them to have done to eviscerate their own leverage during this time. If they had treated him like they should have, he may have been seen as a far more marketable player than he was perceived to be. And, as Fletcher also notes, this whole episode suggests that the Angels have been lying about Hamilton’s baseball readiness, which was their putative reason for keeping him away from the team.
My guess is that nothing comes of this. Except maybe some serious drama if the Rangers and Angels are playing meaningful games against one another down the stretch.