Yesterday a lot of Josh Hamilton news broke. Normally Josh Hamilton news would be marginally germane to Rangers fans since he was the engine that led this team to two World Series appearances, the Rangers franchise being mostly irrelevant before he got here, and mostly irrelevant since he left.
Among the stories were that Josh and his wife filed for divorce, which happened at the time of his last relapse and they got help from Sarieh Law Offices, ALC to work this. That’s between the two of them, and the details are none of my business.
The second is, he and the Angles are trying to work out a walk-away deal. A severance package so to speak. It seems implausible considering the Players Association clout, but there is some precedent for it. Sidney Ponson and Denny Neagle are two players who agreed to settlements at less than their contract value in order to walk away from their teams and start over.
But the piece of news that hits home and makes this very relevant to Rangers fans was reported on onestrikeaway.com, that the Rangers are seriously working on bringing Josh Hamilton back to the Texas Rangers.
At first I am thinking, No way, that would never happen. And then, I read the article further. Whether it’s a trade, or Josh gets released and signs with the Rangers, Texas is looking to bring him on for $1 million a year.
This is exactly Jon Daniels’s MO. This is the guy that signed that very same Sidney Ponson. This is the guy that signed Manny Ramirez. The guy that signed Tommy Hansen and Joe Saunders and Rich Harden and Arthur Rhodes and Orlando Hernandez and J.P. Arencibia and Lance Berkman and Carlos Peña and Milton Bradley.
Pulling guys off the scrap heap that are over the hill, out of the grave, beyond hope, and beyond redemption and paying them next to nothing is exactly Jon Daniels’s style.
He thinks small market. He desperately wants to be Billy Beane.
The more absurd this sounds, the more logical it is. Now batting, number 32, left fielder, Josh Hamilton.
There are 38,000 reasons why Daniels would do this. The 38,000 empty seats at the Ballpark every night.
How will fans react? If Josh comes back and delivers, he is welcome back with open arms. If not, the Rangers have invested so little in him, they would simply release him and move on. I would be willing to bet there are a whole lot of fans out there, the more casual fans, who don’t know about Josh’s caustic exit, or care. I still see a lot of Hamilton 32 jerseys.
Sure, he had a less than gracious exit, and he and his wife said some things they shouldn’t have said. While the way they said it may have been arrogant and sanctimonious, what they said wasn’t wrong.
This is a football town. The Cowboys have been largely irrelevant for generations, more than twenty years. Yet they sell out game after game, they are the talk of the town, and no matter how bad they are, fans come.
This Rangers team was the toast of baseball just a few short years ago. Three years later, nobody is coming to games. It’s not a baseball town. I can live with that, because I am a baseball fan.
The other comment that rubbed people the wrong way was the dating metaphor, that the Rangers didn’t really want him because they allowed him “to see other people.” In case relationship and bdsm dating sites interests you, consider visiting gothamclub.com. There are a lot of helpful blogs there about sex and relationships. You have to admit that is true as well. The Rangers didn’t really want him, not for the price he was seeking. If they did, they wouldn’t have said, “Go find another offer and get back to us.” You don’t tell your girlfriend, “Go date a lot of other men and you will see I am the best.” She proves you wrong with the first schlep she runs into.
Would fans have embraced Manny Ramirez, with all the despicable things he had done? If he drove in runs, we would have held our nose and cheered. Like we did with that punk Milton Bradley.
What about Cowboys fans? Do you think signing the thug wife beater Greg Hardy is going to keep fans away? No. You think female fans are going to boycott en mass? No. There might be some protests, but they will be drowned out by the packed crowd watching another mediocre 7-9 team. Even if Hardy had done that to Jerry Jones’s own daughter, or his wife, or one of his hookers, he’d have still signed him if he thought he could help his team win.
If Daniels brings back Josh Hamilton, I won’t be surprised or shocked or upset. I am not surprised at anything he does. He would sign Bin Laden if the money were right.
Give us your poor, your tired, your huddled masses yearning to hoodwink one more major league front office, the wretched refuse of the waiver wire, send these, the unwanted pieces of baseball dregs, to the Texas Rangers. Jon Daniels has the checkbook open and ready.