Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim owner Arte Moreno addressed media members Friday regarding outfielder Josh Hamilton’s contract and possible language in it protecting the team in case of a drug- or alcohol-related relapse. 

Pedro Moura of the Orange County Register passed along details:

Moreno claimed Friday, hours before the Angels’ home opener, that the language was allowed if approved by MLB and the MLB Players’ Association. He refused to specify what kind of language was included in Hamilton’s deal.

Moreno’s comments come after an arbiter ruled last week that Hamilton would not be suspended by Major League Baseball. The 34-year-old outfielder, who had a history of drug and alcohol addiction when the Angels signed him to a five-year contract worth $125 million in December 2012, self-reported a relapse in February.

Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com and Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times added more context:

Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports provided a statement from the MLBPA, which denies the validity of Moreno’s comments:

After it was announced that Hamilton was not suspended, Angels team president John Carpino and general manager Jerry Dipoto publicly declared their disapproval of the decision. Had Hamilton been suspended, Los Angeles would have received some relief from the base salary of $23 million he is owed for the 2015 season.

Hamilton played in 89 games for the Angels during the 2014 campaign and hit .263 with 10 home runs and 44 RBI. It was a far cry from the superstar who drilled 43 homers and drove in 128 runs on the Texas Rangers in 2012. In five seasons with Texas, Hamilton hit at least 25 home runs four different years and at least 32 home runs three different times.

He has yet to demonstrate that type of productivity since signing with the Angels before the 2013 season.

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