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Hamilton notches three hits in return to lineup

Hamilton notches three hits in return to lineup

Hamilton notches three hits in return to lineup

DETROIT -- Josh Hamilton's right wrist -- already sensitive from a sprain that sidelined him for a month in 2007 -- got sore a couple of weeks ago during an aggressive hitting drill, which requires quick, repetitive two-hand swings at balls quickly being flipped in his direction.

It's safe to say Hamilton won't perform that drill again.

"That's done," Hamilton said. "That's the first thing the doctor told me to shut down."

On Friday, Hamilton's sore wrist prompted him to take a cortisone shot, miss the weekend series against the Pirates -- minus one half-inning on defense -- and stay away from hitting entirely. Early Tuesday afternoon, he picked up a bat again at Comerica Park, said he "couldn't ask to feel any better" and returned to the lineup, going 3-for-5 with an RBI in the Angels' 14-8 victory.

"It's not the swing part; it's the slowing part," Hamilton said when asked how the wrist affects him. "It might look a little weird to you guys, the slowing-down part, but I have to do what feels better. … It'll be fine. Just tape it up and go."

Hamilton owns a .214/.269/.382 slash line and is hitting .171 in June, but Hamilton said he's "not going to use [the injured wrist] as a reason for why I'm not doing good."

The Angels, though, are hopeful that four days off can help Hamilton finally get back on track.

Can't hurt, right?

"We're going to take it one at-bat at a time with him," manager Mike Scioscia said. "Hopefully, he can work through at-bats and get the timing and start to square balls up like he can."

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.

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