Will Rangers let Josh Hamilton walk?

Updated: October 10, 2012, 10:33 AM ET
By Buster Olney

Texas Rangers general manager Jon Daniels told reporters that the team will let Josh Hamilton will test the open market before it makes a bid, Richard Durrett writes. And it's not even clear if the Rangers will bid. From Durrett's story:

    "If you've gone this far, you're going to test the market," Daniels said. "The realities are when a guy goes out and tests the market and it's this close, you're not going to pre-empt it. I think he's going to go out and test the market and see what's out there and get back to us.
    "No door has been closed. We're also very realistic about when a star player hits free agency at this point and the history of them returning to their original club. So we have to prepare both ways and prepare the club for the possibility that he's not back."

Look, maybe this is the Rangers' polite way of exiting their employer-employee relationship with Hamilton, a source of tremendous production for the Rangers -- and extraordinary frustration because of his inconsistency and unreliability. Hamilton vowed to Texas manager Ron Washington before the season that he would play in 155 games this season, and he came close, accumulating 148 games. But his season was shaped by the highest peaks and deepest valleys of performance.