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Lance Berkman considers retiring

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Texas Rangers designated hitter Lance Berkman is reaching the point where he might have to make a difficult decision.

Berkman, who hasn't played since July 6 because of a left hip injury, said Thursday that's he thought about retiring or not coming back this season, but hasn't made a final decision.

The Dallas Morning News first reported Berkman was considering retirement.

Berkman resumed baseball activities this week and is trying to figure out if he can help the Rangers, who are three games out of first place in the American League West. When asked Thursday when he'll know that it's time to walk away, the 37-year-old Berkman said he had no idea.

"It's hard to say," Berkman said of retiring from baseball. "It will just come to the point where you just know and that will be it. Just like when I met my wife, I'll just know."

Berkman, who has been hitting the past four days, said he's made some progress with his hip injury. And his surgically repaired right knee feels better because he hasn't played in a game in almost three weeks. Still, the knee has been an issue all season, and likely always will be, because he can't fully extend it, which has impacted his power. He has six home runs this season.

He is a six-time All-Star who did most of his damage with the state of Texas' other major league team, the Houston Astros, and also played with the New York Yankees and on the St. Louis Cardinals' 2011 World Series title team. Berkman, one of his generation's best switch hitters, has 366 career home runs, 75th on the all-time list.

Berkman is 95 hits shy of 2,000, but said earlier in the week that he's never played the game to rack up numbers and isn't sticking around to chase milestones.