Josh Hamilton talks about struggles

Updated: August 4, 2012, 12:10 AM ET
By Richard Durrett | ESPNDallas.com

Texas Rangers slugger Josh Hamilton issued a statement Friday saying the "issue" he's been dealing with on a personal and professional level is discipline.

"Professionally, it's been plate discipline. Personally, it's been being obedient to the Lord in quitting chewing tobacco," Hamilton said in the statement. "I was hesitant to address the tobacco once again, because it's an area that I've struggled with trying to quit in the past. I wanted to have some time of success under my belt before addressing again publicly, but felt I haven't been given that option with all of the speculating out there as to what the 'mystery issue' was."

Hamilton Professionally, it's been plate discipline. Personally, it's been being obedient to the Lord in quitting chewing tobacco. I was hesitant to address the tobacco once again, because it's an area that I've struggled with trying to quit in the past.

-- Rangers OF Josh Hamilton

Hamilton ended the statement with a listing of two Bible verses -- Hebrews 12:4-5 and John 3:30.

In addressing the media earlier this week, Hamilton said that something was weighing on his mind, but that it would be revealed at a later time. He declined Thursday night to detail what it was, but noted there was a lot of speculating about it.

Hamilton has struggled at the plate for the past two months. He hit just .223 in June and batted just .177 in July. He had 19 homers in April and May but had just nine in June and July.

He did have two hits and four RBIs in the Rangers' win Thursday against the Los Angeles Angels.

"I figured I'd play good the first two months, suck the middle two and pick it up again the last two," Hamilton said jokingly after Thursday's game.

He said he was trying to stop overthinking about everything.

"Basically, I just said, 'You know what? Stop thinking about it. Stop listening to everybody -- everybody's got something to say -- and just go up there and play,' " Hamilton said Thursday night. "(Try to) react and try to slow the game down again. It worked. I'll keep trying to do it."

Hamilton added that he's spent time with hitting coach Scott Coolbaugh in the cages, but that they weren't focusing on any major overhaul.

"There's nothing wrong with my swing," Hamilton said. "It's about trusting myself and not being too aggressive and trying to slow the game down again."

Hamilton said he doesn't think about trying to get on another hot streak. He wants to focus on his at-bats and playing the best he can.

"I don't think about getting going," Hamilton said. "I think about coming out and trying to play, period. I want to play good, but whatever happens, happens. I want to go out and play hard and not stress over anything. Having fun is a key for me, and if I've got a smile on my face then good things are going to happen."

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