Hamilton's return to Rangers not near

Hamilton's return to Rangers not near

ARLINGTON -- The Rangers are not getting outfielder Josh Hamilton back any time soon. Hamilton, sidelined with a bruised left rib cage, said on Friday that the injury is not showing any signs of improvement.

The Rangers still believe there is time for Hamilton to get ready for the playoffs, but his return to the lineup is not close to being imminent.

"It feels about the same way as it did the day after [the injury]," said Hamilton, who hurt his rib cage while crashing into a wall at Minnesota on Sept. 4.

Hamilton had additional X-rays on the rib cage on Monday, and the results showed no structural damage. The diagnosis is still a bruised rib cage. He may have a CT scan later this week if there continues to be little in the way of improvement.

Hamilton has done little in the way of baseball activities since the injury occurred. He tried throwing on Tuesday in Toronto, and that didn't go well.

"It was a little bit of a setback," Hamilton said. "Right now, I'm day-to-day. I might wake up in a day or two and feel good enough. I'll know when it happens. I don't want to have any setbacks."

The Rangers, entering Friday's series opener with the Yankees, still had 22 games left in the season, and their first playoff game wouldn't be until Oct. 6. But Hamilton isn't really interested in sitting out the rest of the regular season just to be ready for the playoffs.

"For me, there's always urgency," Hamilton said. "I want to be in there helping finish off the season and get into the playoffs. I'm not counting on us making the playoffs; I want to continue to fight the rest of the season. I'm not taking anything for granted."

Hamilton continues to lead the American League with a .361 average. He also has 31 home runs, 97 RBIs, a .414 on-base percentage and a .635 slugging percentage.