ANAHEIM, Calif. — Texas Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton once again addressed his troubled history with alcohol abuse, after a Web site published photos of him cavorting with several scantily clad women in a bar last January.
Hamilton created headlines last season with his inspired comeback from the depths of alcoholism and drug abuse to lead the major leagues in RBIs and nearly win the Home Run Derby. The All-Star stood at his locker at Angel Stadium a couple hours before game time Saturday and told about a dozen reporters how much he regretted what happened at a bar in Tempe, Ariz. Prior to this latest episode, Hamilton said he hadn’t drank since Oct. 6, 2005. "I always knew there would be a chance it would come out,” said Hamilton, who has three daughters. "I believe I got to the point where if you have alcohol in your system, your inhibitions go out the window. The details don’t matter — what kind of drink it was. It just put me in a bad situation.” Hamilton said he had gone for something to eat when he decided to have a drink. A dozen photos posted on Deadspin.com show the Texas slugger taking shots off the bar, and dancing and hugging several young women. "I’m embarrassed about it for my wife Katie, for my kids and for the organization,” Hamilton said. "I’m not perfect. It’s an ongoing struggle, and it’s real. It’s amazing how these things can creep back in. But I am human and I have struggles.” When the Rangers acquired the 28-year-old outfielder from the Cincinnati Reds on Dec. 21, 2007, they were aware of Hamilton’s off-the-field problems and came out with a "zero tolerance” policy regarding his drinking. "If I think I can have one drink, I think I can have two, and then it snowballs to 10 or 12,” Hamilton said.