ARLINGTON, Texas -- Josh Hamilton and manager Ron Washington chatted before today's game and decided that it would be a good day for the outfielder to take a day off.
That's despite his red-hot June. Hamilton is in the middle of a career-high 17-game hitting streak and is batting .485 with six doubles, 8 homers and 24 RBIs in that stretch. In June, Hamilton is hitting .476 (39-for-82) with eight homers, seven doubles and 26 RBIs in 20 games.
Hamilton said it was a good "maintenance day" as he walked into the batting cages with hitting coach Clint Hurdle close behind. Washington said Hamilton is healthy and that this is simply a way to get him off his feet and out of the heat for one day.
"I've been getting just about everybody else days off, it was his turn," Washington said. "He's human. He needs day off. It gets [David] Murphy into the game and gives him a chance to get involved too."
* RHP Rich Harden said an injection in his lower back/upper glut helped "take care of some inflammation" and that he's started throwing off flat ground. He's thrown from 60 feet and has felt fine. He'll continue to progress on flat ground before throwing a bullpen session. No timetable has been set for that, but Harden hopes to be back no longer than a few weeks.
"I feel good and I'm ready to go back to work," Harden said. "Hopefully I can keep throwing and get back soon."
Harden said he's felt some pain in that area all season and that it was beginning to impact some of his pitches.
* 3B Michael Young received a large champagne bottle signed by all of his teammates in honor of his record-breaking hit last week. The club had a team meeting on Tuesday and presented the gift to Young.
"It means a lot," Young said. "I talked with my family and friends when it happened, but I spent every day with these guys. I would have been happy with just a handshake from those guys, but that was special. I really enjoy my teammates and the job we're doing and that's the exciting part."
* Washington praised his bullpen again, discussing how valuable Darren Oliver has been to the team. Washington said he has confidence that Oliver can get righties and lefties out, which showed in Tuesday's game as he got six outs, including two switch hitters from the right side. He said he wouldn't consider putting his closer in the game in the eighth to get the heart of the order out because he has "four guys that can do it." Washington noted that Frank Francisco did that twice while the team was in Florida.
* Matt Treanor said the collision at home plate in Tuesday's game bothered his hand more than his head. He had his thumb wrapped and said it was jammed a bit when he made the tag. Pitching coach Mike Maddux went out to the mound to give Treanor a chance to clear his head after the hit. He's in the lineup tonight, so it's nothing he can't play with.