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Why Josh Hamilton is the Best Player In the Major Leagues

Josh Hamilton is a power hitting, center fielder for the Texas Rangers who are now representing the American League in the World Series.

Hamilton has proven during these playoffs that he does truly possess all five-tools to be a superstar player. How many players in this day and age require the Barry Bonds treatment in games? The answer not many, but there was Hamilton being intentionally walked three times by the New York Yankees in the deciding game of the American League Championship Series.

Honestly though, who could blame the Yankees for walking Hamilton. This is a guy who delivered the first punch against the Yankees in Games 1 and 3. He even provided the exclamation point in Game 3 when he blasted a second home run which immediately sent 55,000 fans scurrying for the exits.

The amazing thing about Hamilton is he will only get better with more years. Although it's hard not to wonder what would have happened if he did not develop an addiction to drugs as a No. 1 draft pick of the the then Tampa Bay Devil Rays.

Heading into the draft, Hamilton had scouts salivating about his power and arm, especially because he was only 18-years-old. The Devil Rays selected him, hoping he would one day be a corner stone of their outfield equation.

They saw his powerful left arm of which he topped out at 95-mph when on the mound. They saw the speed of which he was able to gracefully cover as much ground as any center fielder they have seen. Then there was the sound of the ball coming off the bat.

Scouts compared him favorably to another young phenom who was selected out of high school. His name. Alex Rodriguez. Sure it was very high praise to bestow on someone so young, but it was also well-deserved.

Unfortunately for Hamilton and the Devil Rays things quickly turned sour. Hamilton the boy-hood phenom developed a drug addiction. The drug addiction took over his life, requiring a two-year ban from Major League Baseball and a trip to a rehabilitation clinic.

Two years out of baseball. If a player is out of the lineup for only a few days they can lose the timing they had for the next few weeks. Now imagine a player not swinging a bat against professional players for two whole years. The task of going up against the game's elite seems impossible surrounding those circumstances, but not for Hamilton.

He was claimed in the Rule V draft by the Cincinnati Reds and found himself in the big leagues for the first time in his life. No one knew what to realistically expect from Hamilton and he probably didn't know either. It's what makes his next few seasons one of amazement.

Those skills he possessed which got him drafted all those years ago had eroded. In fact they will almost entirely the same from when he was the 18-year-old high school phenom. In his only season with the Reds, Hamilton blasted 19 home runs in only 90 games played showing the power bat he possessed. The Reds then sold high and sent him to the Rangers where he has finally made a home for himself and has developed into one of the games best players.

In two healthy seasons with Texas, Hamilton has blasted 32 home runs in each season and drove in at least a 100 runs in the process. And when the postseason came around he answered the call when the Rangers needed him the most.

Hamilton has no apparent weakness. And with the ordeal he has been through he has no fear. He is the most dangerous hitter in all of baseball. He also quite possibly could be the best player in the game today.

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