Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Hamilton Wins AL MVP

While Texas Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton didn't come away with a World Series ring he has won the 2010 AL MVP.

Hamilton led the AL in batting with a .359 average, hit 32 homeruns and drove in 100 runs.

He has come a very long way. Originally the top draft pick in the country in 1999 by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, Hamilton's career was sidelined by alcohol and drug abuse. He did not play professional baseball between 2004 and 2006.

Hamilton got his second chance with the Cincinnati Reds in 2007 and was then traded to the Rangers prior to the 2008 season for pitcher Edinson Volquez (a deal that has worked out for both clubs.) He set the baseball world afire with his performance during the Home Run Derby at the 2008 All-Star Game at old Yankee Stadium.

Of course, it has not been easy for him. He did have a relapse early in 2009. But Hamilton's Christian faith has for the most part kept him on the straight and narrow.

His teammates certainly have been supportive. When the Rangers clinched the AL West, the ALDS and the AL championship they were there to spray him with ginger ale instead of champagne. Now that he's won his first MVP trophy perhaps there's one more ginger ale celebration is in order.

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