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Monday, May 17, 2010
Rangers rest 'fatigued' Hamilton

By Jeff Caplan
ESPNDallas.com

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Texas Rangers left fielder Josh Hamilton did not play in Monday night's series opener against the division rival Los Angeles Angels.

Before Texas' 4-3 win, manager Ron Washington said Hamilton looks "fatigued, both mentally and physically," and decided to give the outfielder the night off after Sunday's loss at Toronto, the club's third in a row.

Hamilton was 0-for-4 in Sunday's game and 1-for-13 in the weekend sweep against the Blue Jays, dropping his batting average to .268. He's hitting just .191 against lefties, and the Rangers are scheduled to face struggling Angels left-hander Scott Kazmir tonight.

Washington said the southpaw's start did not play into his decision.

"It was predicated on the long grind we had since we played Kansas City, through Oakland and this one," Washington said before the game. "I've been trying to get them all days off if I possibly can. I ended up getting Vlad [Guerrero] and Elvis [Andrus] and [Ian] Kinsler. I couldn't get them all out of the lineup, so his time was today."

Hamilton said he is healthy and would prefer to be in the lineup.

"If I'm not hitting, I want to be in the lineup. Obviously, I can contribute defensively," Hamilton said. "But I don't make the lineups, so I will do what I'm told."

Hamilton said despite his poor-hitting weekend -- which included 0-for-8 on Saturday and Sunday in day games, in which he notoriously struggles -- he feels like he's seeing the ball well.

"I had a tough series in Toronto, but other than that I feel like I've been swinging the bat well," Hamilton said. "I'm really not worried about it to be honest with you."