Mills looks for ways to contain Hamilton

Mills looks for ways to contain Hamilton

HOUSTON -- Rangers slugger Josh Hamilton, who came to Minute Maid Park leading the American League in batting average (.399), home runs (18) and RBIs (45), will certainly be a focal point of the Astros during this weekend's Lone Star Series.

Astros manager Brad Mills said it's difficult to simply pitch around Hamilton, especially when he was the only left-handed hitter in the Rangers' lineup Friday against Astros starter Wandy Rodriguez.

"It's kind of tough to say, 'Hey, we're going to pitch around the only lefty in their lineup," Mills said. "Tonight, that's tough to do, but when a guy is hot like he has been in the last couple of weeks, it makes you think anyway."

Astros center fielder Jordan Schafer is amazed at what Hamilton has been able to accomplish so far this season. Hamilton's 18 homers are the most by any player in Major League history through 31 games.

"It's ridiculous," Schafer said. "The season he's had so far, a lot of people would be happy with 18 homers and 40 RBIs in a season. What he's doing right now is unbelievable."