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Josh Hamilton

Category: Christian Athletes, MLB
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Biography:

The story of Major League Baseball outfielder and Sports Speaker Josh Hamilton is a multitude of highs and lows that have ultimately made him into the motivator and inspiration that he is to many people today. His struggles with drug addiction and other off the field issues hindered his career but allowed him to regain his focus to become an even better man and baseball player. His comeback came full circle when he was elected to the 2008 American League All-star team and won that year’s home run derby in convincing fashion with a record setting 28 total home runs in the first round alone.

Josh was drafted into the major leagues straight out of high school in Raleigh, NC, with the #1 selection in the 1999 MLB Draft by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. In 2000 he was named Minor League player of the Year and showed great promise to produce at the major league level. It was during the 2002 and 2003 seasons when Josh began to experiment with drugs and alcohol and visited several rehabilitation centers to try and correct his problem before being suspended by the MLB for failed drug tests. Josh met several people who helped to turn his life around including former minor league player and manager Roy Silver who allowed Josh to train at his Silver Academy facilities in exchange for Josh’s help around the Academy. The Cincinnati Reds would pick up Josh in the MLB’s 2007 Rule 5 Draft and he finally realized his dream of playing in the majors. The following year he was traded to the Texas Rangers and was a stud center fielder for the team reaching the All-Star Game in all 5 seasons with the team from 2008-2012. In his first year with the Rangers his comeback story was showcased with a cover story in Sports Illustrated magazine. In 2010, Josh won the American League MVP and Batting Champion awards as well as the American League Championship Series MVP in the playoffs.

Hamilton now plays for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and frequently acts as a motivational speaker for many community groups and fans in his spare time. His testimony was featured in the multimedia movement I Am Second, and Casey Affleck is currently in development to make a movie about Josh’s life. Josh and his wife created the foundation Triple Play Ministries in 2008, in which Josh shares his faith and assists others in overcoming their problems.