Angels brace for Hamilton's return to Texas

Angels brace for Hamilton's return to Texas

CINCINNATI -- Josh Hamilton's return to Texas is going to get a lot of media attention this weekend, with a news conference already scheduled for Friday morning, FOX airing the Saturday game and the finale being featured on ESPN's Sunday Night Baseball.

Homecomings like this can only be a distraction. But at least, for the Angels' sake, he's getting it out of the way quickly.

"We'll see what transpires," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said, "but as time goes on, people will disconnect him with Texas and connect him more with us. He was a great contributor to that organization for the last five seasons, and I'm sure the fans understand his contributions."

Hamilton hasn't particularly downplayed the significance of his return to Rangers Ballpark, but he's tried his best to distance himself from it. There can be a tendency to try to do too much when facing your former team -- especially one that basically chose not to bring you back -- but Scioscia believes Hamilton will stay within himself.

"I don't know if Josh gets caught up in that, to be honest with you," the Angels' skipper said. "When he's in the dugout, at the plate, he's pretty level-headed, focused on the game. It was a good sign here on Opening [Day], taking his walks, staying within himself. I would imagine he's just going to go out and play baseball."

Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.