Los Angeles Angels right fielder Josh Hamilton will be in familiar territory this weekend, but he probably won’t feel at home. The longtime Texas Rangers center fielder will return to Rangers Ballpark in Arlington this afternoon for the first time since signing a five-year, $125 million contract with the Angels this past offseason. And he likely will be booed. Loudly. Hamilton’s late-season slump and 0-for-4 performance in the AL wild-card loss in 2012, his controversial comments about the Rangers’ fan base (he called it a football town) after he left and the fact that he joined Texas’ biggest rival should be enough to incite fans. “The people who really get it and understand what I gave, and I gave 100 percent out there every day, are going to clap. The other people who are bandwagon, fair-weather fans, they are going to boo,” Hamilton told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “I learned a huge lesson last year when I got booed for the first time. I had two RBIs and I was like, ‘All right. I get it.’ It doesn’t matter. It’s never enough. It’s just like signing autographs. I can sign for two hours and then if I leave before everybody is signed, it’s like ‘C’mon man. One more.’ It’s never enough. “So I’m not going to kill myself worrying about everybody’s feelings. But I do love people and I do what I can and treat them the best I can.” During his five seasons with the Rangers, Hamilton hit .305/.363/.549 with 142 homers and 506 RBIs. He was voted the 2010 AL MVP and was an AL All-Star in each of the five seasons. But he hit just .245 last September/October, missed time with a dry-eye condition and dropped a routine fly ball in the final game of the regular season that helped the Oakland A’s win the AL West title and forced the Rangers to settle for the wild card.
Josh Hamilton returns to Rangers Ballpark, likely will be greeted by boos
Sporting News | Apr 5