Josh Hamilton says he felt no pressure in the final weeks of the season with his free agency looming.
By JON MACHOTAFS Southwest
ARLINGTON – Throughout the last few weeks, the argument can be made that
Josh Hamilton hasn't appeared interested in playing baseball. The five-time All-Star outfielder who hit .395 in April and drilled 12 home runs in May, cooled during the second-half of the season and plummeted during the final month.
Rangers' 5-1 wild-card loss to the Orioles Friday night saw Hamilton continue to appear disinterested. He was retired during his first three plate appearances on a total of five pitches. His fourth and final at-bat was a three-pitch strikeout.
"It's just one of those things where I didn't get hits," Hamilton said Friday night, standing in front of his locker. "I can't explain it other than not getting hits. I felt pretty good, but it's just one of those things."
With Hamilton becoming a free agent after the postseason concludes, the 2010 AL MVP could've been feeling the pressure of playing for a new contract. But Hamilton was adamant Friday night that that wasn't the case.
"I feel more pressure at my little girl's softball game last night than I did here," he said. "I mean, I know how to play the game. I go out and give everything I got every night. Being injured or being healthy, it doesn't matter. I'm running around doing what I need to do, so I don't ever feel pressure playing baseball."
In regards to not being able to continue the production he had earlier in the season, Hamilton said, "I think everybody's expectations were a little up there after the first couple of months, but then I came back down to reality and played the best I could."