Josh Hamilton says Dallas not a 'true' baseball town
By QMI Agency
|Major League baseball player Josh Hamilton shows off his Los Angels Angels jersey as his wife Katie, looks on during a news conference at the ESPNZone in Downtown Disneyland in Anaheim, California Dec. 15, 2012. (REUTERS/Alex Gallardo)
The Dallas-Ft. Worth area isn’t a true baseball city, according to former Texas Rangers slugger Josh Hamilton.
“There are true baseball fans in Texas, but it’s not a true baseball town,” Hamilton told a CBS television affiliate on Sunday, adding that the Dallas metropolitan, including the Rangers’ home in Arlington, has “always been a football town.”
Tell that to the 42,719 fans who, on average, attended Texas Rangers home games last season, the third highest total in the league.
After five seasons with the Rangers, Hamilton signed a five-year deal worth $125 million with the Los Angeles Angels in December, and said he expects a mixed reaction when the Angels travel in Texas at the beginning of April.
“They’re supportive, but they also got a little spoiled at the same time pretty quickly,” Hamilton said of Rangers fans.
“It will be mixed feelings from the crowd,” he said.
Rangers manager Ron Washington quickly addressed Hamilton's remarks, reverting back to the numbers at the turnstiles.
“I’m not answering anything that Josh said,” Washington told the station. “That’s Josh. Josh is an Angel. That’s Josh’s opinion. My opinion is there were 3.5 million fans that came through (last season). That answers it right there.”
METS SAY NO TO SANTANA
New York Mets left-hander Johan Santana will not pitch at the World Baseball Classic next month.
Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said Monday the club denied Santana a potential spot on Team Venezuela so the two-time Cy Young Award winner can properly prepare for the upcoming season after finishing 2012 on the disabled list.
"Our country is big in baseball," Santana told his club’s official website. "We love the game. To have an opportunity to have an international competition is very important, and I know how important it is. And I really wanted to be part of it."
After throwing the first no-hitter in Mets franchise history last June, Santana sat out a portion of last season due to an ankle injury and lower back problems.
The four-time MLB all-star is expected to start for the Mets on Opening Day, according to CBS Sports.
CHIPPER JONES: 'IT’S NOT GONNA HAPPEN'
Retired third baseman Chipper Jones is back in Atlanta Braves camp – but not because he’s thinking of a comeback.
"It's not gonna happen,” he told ESPN in Florida.
He continued: "I'm well-adjusted, and there's no going back. I've had my time and I don't think people really realize what kind of preparation it takes to get yourself ready to play this game at this level."
Jones, 40, who played all of his 19 seasons with the Braves, is with his former club as a guest hitting coach for a few days, but assured reporters it’s the last time he’ll be wearing his old uniform.
"I'd have to start working out now to get ready for June,” he said.
CLEMENS OK WITH HOF VOTE
The Rocket says he’s not about to lose sleep over last month’s Hall of Fame snub.
"If those guys feel I deserve to be there, then I deserve to be there,” Roger Clemens told the Associated Press. “If they feel I don't, then that's OK too."
Due to suspicion of PED use, along with greats like Barry Bonds and Jeff Bagwell, Clemens didn’t receive the needed 75% of voters to secure induction, finishing with just 37.6% of the vote.
Speaking from Houston Astros camp on Monday, the seven-time Cy Young Award winner seemed at peace with the fact his superior stats might not be enough to see his name enshrined among other MLB greats.
"I've had a great time when I've gone to Cooperstown," Clemens said. "I know a lot of people that work over there, too. If you're around my groups of people, and the same thing when I go to the cities I've played in, the people have been nothing but great down on the streets to me."
BRIEFLY: Milwaukee Brewers first baseman Mat Gamel has reinjured his right knee. Brewers manager Ron Roenicke told reporters Monday that Gamel will miss the entire 2013 season after tearing his ACL during batting practice over the weekend, the second time he’s suffered the injury in less than two years.