Manny Ramirez has been one of the MLB‘s most exciting players in the history of the game, but any team knows the baggage that constantly surrounds this slugger. With Ramirez’s agent Barry Praver telling the public that his client wanted another shot, the free agent market got that much more interesting. Ramirez currently has four home runs in the Dominican Winter League, but it will take more than that to get him signed to any team this offseason.
In my mind, I would love to see “Manny being Manny” back in the game, but his production has obviously wavered in his last few seasons. His last gasp of air was a five-game season with the Tampa Bay Rays that ended with him hitting an abysmal .059 in 17 at-bats. Prior to that, Ramirez was mediocre in 2011 with just nine home runs, but he clubbed 19 homers while hitting .290 with the Los Angeles Dodgers the year before.
Of course Ramirez left quite a bad taste in everyone’s mouth with his 50-game suspension for testing positive for Performance Enhancing Drugs. I have my doubts that any team will take a chance on a player who turns 40 years old in May because any team looking for outfield depth would rather go younger than older. It’s a shame that 15 years of abusing MLB pitching has to dwindle in the depths of the Winter Leagues, but Ramirez has only himself to blame for becoming the next Jose Canseco.
While the game may miss his boyish attitude and luminescent smile, not too many miss what he and plenty of others did to tarnish the game of baseball.