Recovering Hamilton gets another breather

AC joint flare-up forces All-Star out of lineup for fourth straight game

Recovering Hamilton gets another breather

CLEVELAND -- Angels cleanup hitter Josh Hamilton was not in the lineup Monday against the Indians, the fourth straight game he has missed, but the veteran slugger is making progress toward a return.

The former American League Most Valuable Player Award winner has been sidelined since Thursday, when the AC joint in his right shoulder flared up and forced him to leave Los Angeles' 5-4 win in Minnesota. Hamilton originally felt discomfort two days earlier in Houston.

"Josh feels much better, so hopefully that will continue and we'll see where he is tomorrow," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. "He's still day to day, and we'll evaluate where he is when we get to Texas."

The Halos, who begin a three-game series against the Rangers on Tuesday, had to make a one-day stop in Cleveland to make up a June 18 rainout at Progressive Field.

Hamilton received several trigger-point injections Sunday after the soreness moved from his shoulder to his trapezius muscle. Hamilton was originally in the Angels' lineup against the Twins for the series finale, but he was a late scratch after stiffening up following batting practice.

A five-time AL All-Star, Hamilton is batting .263 with 10 home runs and 44 RBIs in 88 games. He was on the disabled list from April 9 to June 3 with a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his left thumb.

Brian Dulik is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.