This season is as crucial as any season Josh Hamilton has played as a Major League Baseball player. After another public relapse with alcohol this past off-season, Hamilton's future with the Texas Rangers was put in limbo heading into his contract year as he'll become a free agent in October.
Typically a pretty good start, Hamilton is off to a scorching start through the first three games of the season. Now granted, it's a small sample size, but what Hamilton has done through the first three games against the Chicago White Sox has been pretty great, and if the Rangers can get something resembling it for the rest of the season, and if Hamilton can stay healthy, he'll up his market value for his upcoming free agency.
On Opening Day it was clear that Hamilton was feeling good at the plate as he went 2-for-3 with a run and an RBI with all of his hits coming on the first pitch of an at-bat. Some might call that over-aggressiveness, but it can also be seen as being in a zone.
He went 2-for-4 on Sunday night with a blast of a home run into the upper porch in right-center field, one of the more impressive places to hit a ball in Rangers Ballpark. After the game, he said in an "aw-shucks kind of way" he knew it was gone when he hit it, but he didn't know it had gone that far until he saw the replay.
In the field, Hamilton was equally impressive, making two big diving catches, including one in the seventh inning that saved a run from scoring in left-center field.
So through one series, the verdict is in: So far, so good (and healthy) for Hamilton.