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06/23/09 7:36 PM ET

Hamilton likely to miss All-Star Game

Rangers star recovering from torn abdominal muscle

PHOENIX -- Josh Hamilton is beginning to believe that playing in the All-Star Game or participating in the Home Run Derby next month in St. Louis is probably not a good idea.

Hamilton, who underwent surgery two weeks ago to repair a torn abdominal muscle, is hoping to be ready to go after the All-Star break. But it doesn't look likely that he'll be playing in the All-Star Game despite being third in the latest fans voting update that was released on Tuesday.

"It comes down to, 'Do I want to go and do that?'" Hamilton said Tuesday before the Rangers game with the D-backs. "The best thing would be to decline going and let somebody else take that spot.

"Obviously if I stayed up there in the voting, I appreciate the fans doing what they've done. The fans know I love them to death, but my first priority is doing what's best for the Rangers and being ready for the second half of the season."

Hamilton had surgery on June 9, and the understanding at the time was that he would be out 4-6 weeks. The All-Star Game is July 14 in St. Louis.

"We'll decide it later," Hamilton said. "The first thing is I've got to get back to playing."

Hamilton was the star of the Home Run Derby last year at Yankee Stadium. He did not win the event but did set a first-round record with 28 home runs. He admitted that the Home Run Derby is definitely not a good idea when trying to come back from an abdominal injury.

"Even if I went to the All-Star Game, I probably wouldn't do Home Run Derby," Hamilton said.

Hamilton admitted that's probably why he continues to rank high in the fan voting even though he has missed much of the first half because of injury.

"People want to see something like I did last year," Hamilton said. "There's always next year."

Hamilton is on the current road trip with the Rangers. He did some agility work in the field, some long tossing and running on Tuesday. He has been swinging in the batting cages, although not against full-speed pitching.

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.