Hamilton and Sheets.

The Rangers are describing Josh Hamilton’s status as day-to-day after he left last night’s game after four innings with inflammation in his left knee.  Hamilton had that knee scoped twice in 2006, but there’s apparently no structural damage now.  Hamilton dinged it a bit in the Atlanta series last week and had it flare up when walking up the dugout steps in the first inning last night, shortly before diving for a ball in center field.

Hamilton, winner of the American League Player of the Month award in April and May, is hitting .265/.315/.482 with five home runs and 15 RBI in June.  He already has more strikeouts in the month (24) than he had in either of the first two months of the season.  He has driven in runs in just one of his last six games, and yet still leads the major leagues comfortably with 76 RBI (National League leader Adrian Gonzalez is next with 65 RBI).

The third-best RBI total in pro ball belongs to Chris Davis, who has driven in 73 between Frisco and Oklahoma.  (Rockies AAA first baseman Joe Koshansky — four years older than Davis and just a year younger than Hamilton — has 76 RBI.)

Max Ramirez is expected to start tonight behind the plate in Houston, and tomorrow at first base.

The answer to yesterday’s query: Cincinnati, Oakland, and Texas.

According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Ben Sheets is telling the Brewers that he will test the free agent market this winter.  His complete-game four-hitter (one run, no walks, seven strikeouts) against Atlanta on Monday raised his record to 9-1, 2.59 through 15 starts.  Sheets, who turns 30 in three weeks, averages seven innings a start and leads the National League with three complete games.

Just thought I’d toss that note in about the Baton Rouge native who now lives in Dallas.

You can read more from Jamey Newberg at www.NewbergReport.com.

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