Josh Hamilton stays home, rests
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Josh Hamilton was an excused absence from the World Series on Friday.
Actually, Hamilton was following orders by staying home and resting up for Game 3 on Saturday.
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Rangers manager Ron Washington told his star outfielder to get as much rest as possible for the groin strain that's lately robbed him of his power. A week before, the Rangers had an optional workout before Game 6 of the ALCS and Hamilton used that as another day of at-home recovery.
Hamilton has yet to hit a home run in 48 at-bats during this postseason. Yet he was still able to muscle a fly ball deep enough in the ninth inning of Game 2 to produce a sacrifice fly that drove in the tying run.
Washington could save some of the wear and tear on Hamilton's legs by using him strictly as a designated hitter. But that's not going to happen. It's worth noting that Hamilton's range in the field has been fine. He made a terrific catch crashing into the left-field wall, saving at least a run and maybe two, plus ending a Detroit rally in Texas' cinching win in Game 6 of the ALCS.
"We've got five games (left), I'm not sitting him," Washington said.
The only adjustment Washington will make is putting Hamilton in left field when facing a left-handed starter because speedster Craig Gentry, a right-handed hitter, can handle center field. But when they face a righty and lefty David Murphy is in the lineup, Washington will put Murphy in left and Hamilton in center.
"I'm not changing anything," he said.
Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press