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Josh Hamilton Relapses, But Is That Our Business?

Who else is uncomfortable with receiving an alert whenever someone sees Josh Hamilton take a drink?

The Dallas Morning News reported Hamilton was seen drinking in a Dallas bar Monday, though there's no indication of how much he had to drink. Was he drunk? Was Ian Kinsler, who reportedly tried to persuade Hamilton to go home, able to get his teammate to go home? Did Hamilton have the same dark look in his eyes as he did when he relapsed in 2009, a look bartenders in Raleigh (his hometown) quickly recognized from pictures?

Without knowing those things, this feels like none of our business. But it's news, and that's the flip side of Hamilton taking his plight public. It allowed him to inspire millions, but also directed their eyes to his attempts to maintain. People who follow his quest for sobriety want to know when he stumbles, for reasons good and bad. Hamilton is an addict, a very public one, and sharing his successes made his failures fit for public consumption.

But it still feels as if this is more than we need to know. It relates, certainly, to his discussions with the Rangers about a contract extension. Nolan Ryan has the unenviable task of determining what to do with a once-a-generation talent, a fan favorite, who happens to be a ticking time bomb. But if one trip to a bar would scare the Rangers off, they probably wouldn't have offered him a deal anyway. Moments like these for addicts like Hamilton aren't unlikely. They're around the corner every day, and nothing this week changed that.

Here's wishing Hamilton the best. We'll find out what happens next, whether we want to know or not.

For more on Hamilton and the Rangers, please visit Baseball Nation and Lone Star Ball.