Signs pointing to Cleveland debut for Rangers’ Hamilton

Texas Rangers' Josh Hamilton will rehab with Double-A Frisco through Wednesday this week. 

Mark Zaleski/AP

Josh Hamilton’s return to the Texas Rangers may not come in New York next week.

Hamilton, who is slated to rehab for Double-A Frisco through Wednesday, could be ready to join the club when they begin a three-game series at New York Friday but general manager Jon Daniels said it wasn’t a guarantee.

"It’s not really a concern for me," Daniels said. "I think it’ll probably be New York or Cleveland. I haven’t made that decision yet."

If the Rangers opt to bring Hamilton back for the New York series he’ll likely face media scrutiny he wouldn’t encounter if the club waited the series to start in Cleveland May 25. Daniels said that wouldn’t be a factor in the club’s decision.

"There’s going to be media wherever Josh goes, whether it’s New York, Texas, Cleveland, anywhere," Daniels said. "Certain guys bring that with them. Obviously New York’s going to be more, that’s the nature of the market."

Hamilton had four hits in five at-bats in his first game for Frisco Saturday. He’s slated to play Sunday, take off Monday and then play for the Roughriders again Tuesday and Wednesday. 

That may not be enough time to have him ready for game action. Hamilton’s only been playing in rehab games for a week and is still getting over the soreness most players experience in spring training.

"He could probably always use a few more games to get going," he said. "That’s where we are. If I had to say right now, I would say it’d probably be Cleveland more likely, but we haven’t made that call yet. I’d err on the side of giving him some additional time."

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