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Josh Hamilton hits homer, gets ovation

10/2/2010

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Josh Hamilton blasted a 413-foot homer to right-center in the fifth inning for his first hit since returning from a fracture in two ribs on Friday.

It was Hamilton's first home run since Aug. 29 against Oakland (in Arlington) and it was his 32nd homer of the season, matching his career-high from 2008.

Hamilton hit a 1-1 fastball off Ervin Santana with Elvis Andrus on base to turn a 2-1 Rangers' deficit into a 3-2 lead. That's the kind of production Hamilton put up all season and what the Rangers hope to see in the postseason.

Hamilton was given a loud standing ovation by the large crowd in attendance at the park and Michael Young and Ian Kinsler exchanged excited high-5s in the dugout.

Hamilton, the designated hitter on Saturday, said he felt like he was not as sore as he expected to be after playing the field for the first time on Friday. He's slated to play all nine innings in left field on Sunday. Hamilton wondered what his timing would be like after not playing since hitting the right-center field wall at Target Field in Minnesota on Sept. 4, but it took him just six at-bats after returning to hit a homer.