Daniels: No Josh Hamilton progress
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Texas Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said he has not communicated with Josh Hamilton's agent, Mike Moye, at the winter meetings. But Daniels did acknowledge that he could meet with Moye in the near future.
Hamilton will likely not be part of any meeting. He tweeted Tuesday night that he and his wife Katie were leaving the winter meetings.
Daniels claimed he saw various reports the Rangers and Hamilton were close to a multiyear deal. Daniels disputed those reports, stating that outside of texting to talk about getting together at some point, he hasn't had any contact with Moye.
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"I would suspect we'll get together relatively soon, but we haven't had any contact," Daniels said. "I keep reading that we have a deal done. I keep asking the guys in the room, 'Who snuck out and did it?' "
Daniels said the plan with Hamilton remains the same -- the former American League MVP would get a sense of the market and return to the Rangers to see if there was a deal both sides could agree on.
"He's going through his process, and we're maintaining dialogue and we're maintaining interest," Daniels said. "That's really where it stands right now."
When asked if nothing was imminent, Daniels responded: "That's fair."
Hamilton flew to Nashville on Sunday and was on the same flight as Daniels, though the two didn't talk about a contract. Daniels assumed that Hamilton was in Nashville to meet prospective teams.
Ray Davis, co-chairman of the board for the Rangers, arrived in Nashville on Tuesday and is sitting in on some of the club's meetings. Minority owner Neil Leibman is also on site, as is CEO Nolan Ryan. It means the Rangers have all the necessary pieces in place to make any major financial decisions in regards to Hamilton or anyone else.
The Rangers have consistently maintained interest in Hamilton, though they want him to return under a deal -- especially length of term -- in which they are comfortable.
That may mean paying Hamilton a high annual salary but limiting how long the contract goes, and perhaps including a vesting option triggered on how many games he plays.
Should the market not expand for Hamilton, the Rangers could be poised to retain him. He has a support system in place in Texas, owns property there and is familiar with how the franchise works.