November 23, 2014

Manny Ramirez: A Wanted Man?

photo: Ray Stubblebine/Reuters

Saw a tweet from Diamond Leung linking to Bob Keisser’s column in today’s Long Beach Press Telegram.  According to Bob, there apparently is some interest from one team in Manny Ramirez:

A baseball insider says the club has been contacted by an American League team that is interested in Manny Ramirez if the team will pay part of his $20 million salary for 2010.

It’s a team that plays in a very mediocre division, has a few team officials familiar with Ramirez, and always needs a bump in notoriety.

Hmm.  Now I know Manny Ramirez didn’t perform on the field as he did before his 50-game suspension this year, but he’s still a worthwhile piece in the Dodgers’ puzzle and can provide some pop in the cleanup spot that Juan Pierre cannot.  And remember, Manny always seems to perform at his best when he’s in a contract year and people are doubting him.  I also think he’s a valuable clubhouse presence in 2010 when these young Dodgers seek to get over the emotional hurdles from losing to the Phillies for two consecutive years in the NLCS.

All that said, I’m open to consideringmoving Manny, but to even consider this, Ned & Company will need to bring in a big bat to replace Manny’s slot in the lineup.  Hey, it’s always nice to have options, right?  My great fear is that the McCourt divorce saga could cause Frank to move Manny for bogus reasons (like moral grounds given Manny’s past transgressions…when has Frank ever showed that he cared about the morality behind Manny’s past mistakes?) when he’s really just looking to save some cash.  After all, Manny Ramirez is no Andruw Jones, and paying part of Ramirez’s salary while he’s on another team and then going back to an outfield of Kemp, Ethier and Pierre for 2010 is simply unacceptable.  Here’s hoping that I’m not jumping to inaccurate conclusions, but I don’t think it’s wrong to speculate at this point given the tumultuous off-season so far.

Now who is this mystery team?  Could it really be Ramirez’s original team, the Cleveland Indians?  A mediocre AL divison is obviously the AL Central and the Indians could use some help after the embarrasment of watching two of their former pitchers start Game 1 of the World Series. 

Froom MLB Trade Rumors:

Did the Twins, Tigers, White Sox, Indians, or Royals express interest in Manny?  Indians GM Mark Shapiro crossed paths with Ramirez.  The Tigers’ David Chadd worked for the Red Sox when Manny was there.  Do any of the other teams have officials familiar with the slugger?  In general, do you buy this rumor?

Not sure I do right now, but it’s an intriguing question as the Hot Stove League begins to simmer…

Photo Credit: Ray Stubblebine/Reuters