Hamilton out 4-6 weeks

Though some
Rangers officials feared worse, it’s still another big blow to owners who pinned their title hopes on Hamilton sustaining last year’s feel-good story.

Sure, hindsight is 20-20,
but this reminds us about the dangers of getting carried away by one big year. No matter what anyone told you about Hamilton before the season, the
reality is that nobody really knew how 2009 would play out. How many modern-day ballplayers became superstars after having just
40 at-bats above Class A before making it to The Show.

And injuries are
nothing new.  Remember, the year before he
arrived in Texas, he struggled to stay healthy in Cincinnati, playing only 90
games due to numerous nicks and bruises.

The Reds went on to trade Hamilton to the Rangers for Edinson Volquez, and both
players emerged as All-Stars in new surroundings. Now, neither of them can avoid the trainer’s room.

One potential
positive from Hamilton’s injury is the opportunity it creates for Andruw Jones,
who has shown glimmers of his former self in Texas, posting a .533 slugging
percentage thanks to an adjusted batting stance and improved plate discipline. Granted, he’ll have to battle David Murphy, Marlon Byrd and Hank Blalock for playing time, but there should be plenty of plate appearances to go around given the righty-lefty breakdown. Plus, the Rangers are contenders now, so if Murphy can’t do better than a .708 OPS, they won’t hesitate to bench him in favor of Jones. Texas is scheduled to
face four left-handed starters this week, so now is as good a time as any to give the right-handed-hitting Jones another chance.

— Alex Cushing, MLB.com

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