Angels' Hamilton takes live batting practice, tracking toward rehab stint
MAY 16, 2014 10:55a ET
Los Angeles Angels outfielder Josh Hamilton, out since April 8 because of a torn ligament in his left thumb, took batting practice Thursday for the first time since having surgery April 11. Hamilton reported no problems after the session, according to the Los Angeles Daily News, and was hitting line drives to all parts of the park.
When Hamilton had his surgery, he was expected to be out 6-8 weeks, and Friday marks the five-week anniversary of the surgery.
"He's kept himself as close as he can to staying in baseball shape with some of the drills heâ's done," Angels manager Mike Scioscia told reporters. "He's been running the bases, he's been throwing."
Hamilton hit .250 with 21 home runs and 79 RBI in his first season with the Angels in 2013. He's capable of far more, as his .285-43-128 campaign of 2012 would suggest. The Angels have fared well without Hamilton, as they trail Oakland by 2½ games for the AL West lead entering Friday's play and are in the top five in the majors in runs scored and RBI.
Getting Hamilton back will further strengthen the Los Angeles lineup as the Angels pursue their first division title since 2009.