Josh Hamilton is the Feel-Good Story of the Year

Faith, Recovery, and Good Baseball — What’s Not to Like?

Josh Hamilton might not have won the overall Home Run Derby last night, but he put on an amazing display of hitting in the first round, with 28 homers, many of them in the upper deck. He hit 500+ foot blasts not once, not twice, but three times.

But Home Run Derbies come, and they go. The main thing to understand about Josh Hamilton is that, in the most important ways, he’s already won. After being drafted number one overall by Tampa Bay in 1999 — and being called “the best I’ve ever seen” by multiple scouts — he ended up taking a detour as a drug addict and an alcoholic for three or four years, and was out of the game from ’03-’05. He could easily be dead already.

But because of his new-found faith, and his wife, and his family, he’s turned his life completely around, and can now show the world his talent for hitting baseballs. Win … win … win.

So good for him. God Bless Josh Hamilton.

Sports is often filled with stories of failure and disappointment, especially because so many young men with too much time and money on their hands are central to just about every sport. It’s sad to watch, even if it is inevitable much of the time; young men will do what young men will do. But because Josh’s recovery is faith-based, it would seem that he has a higher chance at success; here’s a quote from UT-Southwestern addiction specialist Dr. Bryon Adinoff (from the above link):

“If you replace addiction with religion, it’s not an addiction, it’s something meaningful, socially appropriate and rewarding,” Adinoff says. “It’s typically very healthy behavior.”

It was interesting to me how neither the broadcast crew on ESPN, or the article I read this morning (AP), noted that faith played the central role in Josh’s recovery. It’s like they’re scared to even mention it.  Out here in the real world, we know that oftentimes, religion helps people, and we also understand that acknowledging one specific instance where it quite likely saved a man’s life is just mentioning a true fact.

If they all care so much about the Josh Hamilton story, don’t they owe that to him, if nothing else?

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1 comment
  1. Marz said:

    Nice read, thanks for posting it. BTW, although ESPN tried to tip toe around the faith item that is central to Josh’s recovery, Josh himself never failed to mention God in one way or another each and every time they spoke with him!

    I think Peter Gammons was the one who casually mentioned Josh has become an evangelistic figure in the Rangers clubhouse. One of the other announcers mentioned it was a “bad night to be an atheist.”

    I totally agree with you how the media cowers from mentioning anything to do with God or religion, but there was no denying that last night God was in the house that Ruth built!