Josh Hamilton's 16-game hit streak ends

ARLINGTON, Texas – Rangers closer Joe Nathan offered Josh Hamilton a little consolation after Thursday’s loss to the A’s.

“That’s all right, dog, you can start another one,” Nathan said to Hamilton.

Hamilton’s response: “What are you talking about?”

Um, that 16-game hitting streak that was snapped with an 0-for-2 day off the bench. It was the longest active hitting streak in the big leagues and the longest in the American League this season. But it was not a big deal to Hamilton, who leads the AL in the Triple Crown categories with a .399 average, 18 homers and 45 RBIs.

“I didn’t know what it was at,” Hamilton said. “I didn’t care was what it was at. … I just don’t worry about it. I’m not going to lose any sleep over it.”

Hamilton, who is coming off one of the best weeks in big league history with nine homers and 18 RBIs last week, definitely hasn’t looked tired. However, he said looks can be deceiving and was grateful to get at least most of the day off.

Hamilton came off the bench to pinch-hit for Craig Gentry to lead off the bottom of the eighth and grounded out to shortstop Cliff Pennington, who was playing up the middle in the A’s shift. Hamilton lined out to Pennington in the same spot to lead off the bottom of the 10th.

Washington wanted to give Hamilton a full day off, but he said before the game that he wasn’t going to have Hamilton sitting on the bench in a potential game-winning situation.

“I’m not disappointed because one swing of the bat right there, he could have won the game for us,” Washington said. “Opportunity presented itself and I did it.”

Now Hamilton heads to Houston with the opportunity to start another hitting streak.