Word broke today that Josh, who is a recovering addict, had relapsed today in his battle with alcohol. Josh's story is known far and wide. His career started as a No. 1 draft pick, but it took a dramatic free-fall in the minors due to an addiction to alcohol and crack cocaine.
His career has also had an inspiring rise, as he kicked his cocaine addiction and returned to the majors. Since then, he has become a franchise player for the Texas Rangers, leading them to the past two World Series.
This isn't the first time Josh has relapsed. He was very public about his relapse in 2009, when he was caught in photographs drinking and partying. It is safe to say he will be very public and openly admit to this one, too. It is also rumored that his good friend and teammate, Ian Kinsler, stopped by and tried to convince him to leave the bar, unfortunately to no avail.
This is a sad story and a tragic error in judgement for one of today's great MLB players. Nevertheless, many fans will overreact to the news. Josh is a recovering addict, and as many recovering addicts know, there will be slips-ups, and there will be relapses. Please, cut this man some slack.
Josh Hamilton is a great man, and one who has been through a tremendous roller-coaster ride of a life. While he has relapsed, it is important for the Texas Rangers' fanbase to stand behind this man and not berate and bad-mouth him.
As fans, we should stand behind our players and support them through the most difficult of times. As far as we know, he has not failed a drug test and should be ready to go for spring training. I wish Josh—and the rest of the Texas Rangers’ fanbase—the best of luck through this tough time within their franchise.