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September 24, 2012

Josh Hamilton back in lineup after eye issue

Josh Hamilton might have summed it up best when explaining his latest setback.

Hamilton missed five games with what was eventually diagnosed as ocular keratitis, a condition that dries the cornea. The reasons for it include to much consumption of caffeine and energy drinks.

"Guys, it's me. It's Josh. It's going to be something weird," Hamilton said. "It wasn't impacting my vision, it was impacting my ability to play the game."

Hamilton retuns to the lineup tonight, batting third and playing center field. There are no limitations on Hamilton, manager Ron Washington said.

Hamilton initally felt something was wrong during the last homestand, and then was taken out of Tuesday's game in Anaheim. He said his vision wasn't effected, but he didn't have great focus or concentration. Hamilton compared it to a "sugar high."

"It was like that times 10," Hamilton said. "Throw the bright lights in there and it was hard for me to get off the spot."

Hamilton will cut back on his intake of caffeine and energy drinks, as well as chocolate. He said he had coffee in the morning and midday, then would take an energy drink before the game and some chocolate afterwards.

Here are a few other pregame notes:

* Mike Olt will start taking swings today, and believes he will be able to play before the end of the season. Olt hasn't gone through baseball activities in 10 days, as he recovered from plantar fasciitis in his right heel.

* The Rangers have a full bullpen. Tanner Scheppers said he is available, and said his right knee is healhty enough to pitch. Ron Washington likes having all relievers available, but said the team is at the point of the season where the game dicates who will pitch.

* Saturday's Rangers-Angels game has been moved to 3:05 p.m. to accomodate a FOX national broadcast.

-- Drew Davison

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