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Angels decline comment on Josh Hamilton’s reported cocaine use

Los Angeles Angels general manager Jerry Dipoto shed no new light on reported off-field issues and said outfielder Josh Hamilton is at home rehabbing from surgery.

“I’m not going to get into any kind of situation or information regarding Josh Hamilton,” Dipoto said Thursday in Tempe, Ariz. “He’s not here in camp with us. He is at home rehabbing from a surgery and I’m going to leave it at that.”

Dipoto said Wednesday that Hamilton was in New York for a meeting with baseball officials.

Hamilton had shoulder surgery in early February. He met with MLB officials about an undisclosed disciplinary issue on Wednesday. According to CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman, Hamilton had a relapse of cocaine use.

Manager Mike Scioscia said losing the potential a slugger like Hamilton brings will impact the depth of the lineup. For now, the plan in the outfield would include newly acquired Matt Joyce — who came to the team in a trade with the Tampa Bay Rays — and Colin Cowgill platooning.

“Cowgill is a teriffic left fielder,” Scioscia said. “We can match him up.”

Dipoto said the Angels would remain focused on winning, regardless of what’s next for Hamilton, who is owed $90 million over the next three seasons — $25.4 million for 2015, $32.4 million in 2016 and $32.4 million in 2017.

“We’ve got a nice mix of veterans and young players that will keep it together,” he said.

Hamilton missed 73 games last season. Hamilton batted .263 with a .331 on-base percentage, a .414 slugging percentage, 10 homers and 44 RBIs in 89 games. The power numbers were his lowest since 2009.

From 2003 to 2005, Hamilton was suspended from baseball for cocaine and alcohol addiction. He was reinstated but subject to ongoing drug testing and had alcohol relapses in 2009 and 2012.

Hamilton came to the Angels in 2013 after signing a five-year, $125 million contract. He won the American League MVP award in 2010 and played in two consecutive World Series with the Texas Rangers.

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