There was a bounce in Josh Hamilton’s step Thursday at the unveiling of the Rangers Youth Academy baseball field in Dallas that will bear his name. Hamilton, who is out for the season after having a complicated left knee procedure that he described as “kind of” reconstructive, feels he is finally rid of the nagging issue.
“Bending it with no pain, my quality of life,” Hamilton said of the biggest improvements. “I’m just really excited that I feel like it’s better, I feel like it’s fixed. Now the only thing is taking my time, strengthening it up and get ready for next year.”
Five weeks after his third procedure on the knee, the former American League MVP was given an update by his doctor on the progress he had made.
“He says that at five weeks (I’m) about where we want somebody at three-and-a-half months,” Hamilton said. “I said I just want to know if I’m going to be good for spring training. He said I’ll be a lot better for spring training and almost too good, too soon.”
Asked if he believes if that spring training work will be with the Rangers, Hamilton said, “100 percent,” citing that he still believes he is “just as good as anyone in the game.”
But also recognizes that, having struggled with injuries and only playing in 139 total games the last three MLB seasons, he will have to earn a position with the Rangers in what would be the final year of his contract.
“If I have to win a spot, wherever that is, that’s fine with me,” Hamilton said. “I’ll just be happy to be back out there and be pain-free and playing again.”