Outfielder Josh Hamilton has agreed to sign with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, pending the physical.
The contract is expected to be 5 years, worth $125 million. Following last offseason, when the Angels signed first baseman Albert Pujols to an eye-opening 10-year, $240 million contract, the Angels have made another big splash offensively.
Hamilton, 31, was the first overall pick by the, then Tampa Bay Rays, in the 1999 Major League Baseball Draft. In 2001, Josh Hamilton’s first connection to drugs and alcohol followed a car accident he was involved in. He would miss the 2003 season and would be suspended in the 2004 season for violating the drug policy implemented by MLB. From 2004 to 2006, he would not play baseball but expressed a desire to get into shape and return to baseball.
In the 2006 offseason, Josh Hamilton was not placed on the Rays 40-man roster and was eligible to be selected in the Rule 5 Draft. He was selected by the Chicago Cubs and was immediately traded to the Cincinnati Reds for $100,000 ($50,000 for the rights to his contract, $50,000 for the Rule 5 Draft selection). A requirement of being a Rule 5 Draft selection is that you must stay on the major league roster of the team for the entire season. He would make his major league debut on April 2, 2007 and his first hit was a home run. After this season, Hamilton was traded to the Texas Rangers for two pitchers.
In 2008, he led the outfielders in All-Star voting and would also be asked to participate in the Home Run Derby. In the first round of the Home Run Derby, Hamilton hit a single-round record 28 home runs in a fantastic showing despite losing the tournament.
In 2010, Josh Hamilton would be the American League Most Valuable Player with a .359 batting average, 32 home runs, and 100 runs batted in. The Texas Rangers would make the World Series for the first time in the franchise history but lost to the San Francisco Giants.
In 2012, Josh Hamilton’s notable game was a 5-for-5 showing against the Baltimore Orioles in May. He hit four home runs and is the 16th player to achieve this feat, the first since Carlos Delgado in 2003. He also received the most fan votes for the All-Star game with over 11 million. He finished the season with a .285 batting average, 43 home runs, and 128 runs batted in.
Josh Hamilton is a 5-time All-Star and the 2010 American League MVP. He will join a lineup that features 2012 Rookie of the Year Mike Trout and one of the best hitters in baseball, Albert Pujols.
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