Josh Hamilton has been the cornerstone of the Rangers for the past four years, leading them to the first to World Series berths in franchise history. He wormed his way into our hearts with his stellar play and heartwarming triumph over adversity, then immediately tried to worm his way back out with brief relapses into drunkenness, a slight if stubborn prima donna streak, and a late-season penchant for playing execrable baseball at key moments.
No longer. ESPN -- and basically every other sports outlet by now -- is reporting that Hamilton has signed a five-year, $125 million deal with the division rival Los Angeles Angels.
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That's a lot of scratch, more, evidently, than the Rangers were willing to part with. Whether spending that type of money on Hamilton is worth it depends completely on whether he plays like good Josh Hamilton or demon-haunted Josh Hamilton, but his departure is a loss for the club. But the big losers here are local sports writers, who spilled endless amounts of ink questioning Hamilton's mental toughness and his commitment to baseball. They'll have to find someone else to write about now.