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Rangers could make push for Torii Hunter

Torii Hunter appears to be ready to sign with the Detroit Tigers -- unless the Texas Rangers make a push.

Jesse Johnson-US PRESSWIRE

Free agent outfielder Torii Hunter is reportedly close to signing with the defending American League champion Detroit Tigers, unless the Texas Rangers make a push, per Jon Paul Morosi.

Hunter had a resurgent year in 2012, batting .313/.365/.451 with the Los Angeles Angels, while belting 16 home runs and driving in 92 runs. Hunter's bWAR of 5.5 was the highest of his career.

With Josh Hamilton set for free agency, and consequently, likely to depart, Hunter could be an option to replace Hamilton in Texas' lineup. While the Rangers could still pursue Hunter, it appears that Texas, barring a late push, will look elsewhere for Hamilton's replacement.

Set to enter his age 38 year in 2013, giving a multi-year deal to Hunter could easily wind up a mistake. Though Hunter is coming off of a great year in 2012, 2010 and 2011 were relatively pedestrian, with Hunter posting bWARs of 2.7 and 3.4.

Texas has been attempting to load up on trade ammo to pursue Justin Upton, and the Rangers could pursue free agent outfielder B.J. Upton instead of Hunter.

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.