"I know I can be impactful as a pinch-hitter but I can be more impactful having four at-bats," Hamilton said. "I'm not ready to say that's going to be my only role. Over the next few weeks I'm going to try and figure things out and do everything I can. I'll keep working to get back out there by the end of the month."
Hamilton has been sidelined since Aug. 15 because of continued soreness in the knee. He started feeling good enough last week to start swinging the bat, but the knee still bothered him when he tried to run.
He was activated Tuesday only because the rosters were expanded to up to 40 players. Otherwise he would still be on the disabled list. He can swing the bat and the Rangers have pinch-runners available if needed. But there is still a question of what would happen if he hit the ball in the gap and tried for a double.
"If it's close and I don't think I can make it, I'll just have to shut it down," Hamilton said. "I'm going to be cautious but I want to do everything I can to get back."
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.