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April 8, 2011

Transaction Analysis Blog

Manny Ramirez Retires

by R.J. Anderson

Manny Ramirez’s career with the Rays ends after 17 plate appearances, as he has decided to retire rather than submit to a 100-game suspension for violating baseball’s drug policy.

One of the game’s greatest personalities (and hitters) alike will end his stay with career totals of 2,574 hits, 555 home runs, and a slash line of .312/.411/.585. Ramirez’s other achievements include 12 All-Star game appearances and nine top-10 Most Valuable Player award voting finishes (though he never won the award). Ramirez will be remembered for his time in Cleveland and Boston, although he spent most of his final seasons in Los Angeles, with a brief cameo for the White Sox and an even briefer one with the Rays.

Most will recall that Ramirez was suspended for 50 games during the 2009 season for another violation, as he tested positive for hCG–a women’s fertility drug—that effects testosterone cycles. Initial reports suggest this latest failed test came during spring training and that Ramirez chose against appealing the process. It’s an unfortunate ending for many reasons, not the least of which is how his achievements will forever be questioned.

Ramirez reached base just once for the Rays, otherwise enduring a tough week. Ramirez’s final big league start included three strikeouts –the last of which drew boos from the Tropicana Field crowd. Joe Maddon decided to give him a personal day off that preceded another day off –this one for child custody matters. In the end, the deal that looked too good to be true was.

To replace Ramirez on the active roster, the Rays have purchased Casey Kotchman’s contract from Triple-A Durham. There is no word on exactly how the lineup will unfold, but imagination suggests they could place Johnny Damon in left field, Kotchman at first, and Dan Johnson at designated hitter, or, perhaps Sam Fuld in left, Damon at DH, and Johnson at first base.

R.J. Anderson is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see R.J.'s other articles. You can contact R.J. by clicking here

25 comments have been left for this article. (Click to hide comments)

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npb7768
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I never liked this guy anyway.

Apr 08, 2011 14:50 PM
rating: -6
 
Isaac Dix

I can't believe he never won an MVP. Tragic.

Apr 08, 2011 15:01 PM
rating: 0
 
ScottyB
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One of the game's GREATEST personalities????????? How about worst.

Apr 08, 2011 15:33 PM
rating: -4
 
dianagram

Ummm .... greatest in this case meaning newsworthy. You always paid attention to Manny, good OR bad.

Apr 08, 2011 15:35 PM
rating: 3
 
ScottyB

Very clearly Manny was one of the greatest hitters.

if the author meant unique, eccentric or noteworthy, he could have written that.

Apr 08, 2011 20:26 PM
rating: -1
 
JukeboxHero

Ivory Tower, meet your newest tenant.

Apr 08, 2011 20:47 PM
rating: 2
 
ScottyB

I'll happily occupy the tower with JoePo anyday. http://joeposnanski.si.com/2011/04/08/the-retirement-of-mannybmanny/#more-7201

Apr 09, 2011 10:12 AM
rating: 1
 
dianagram

Casey Kotchman .... oy. Free Desmond Jennings!

Apr 08, 2011 15:34 PM
rating: 1
 
SC

and with it, my fantasy season. Sure am glad the drug test (taken in Spring Training) results didn't become official until after the season started so I could spend $23 on him in the draft.

Apr 08, 2011 17:18 PM
rating: 1
 
Dan W.

There is absolutely ZERO way that having or not having Manny Ramirez could possibly be of that great importance to any fantasy team this year.

Apr 08, 2011 18:44 PM
rating: -1
 
SC

Very deep league.

Alas, I have a soft spot for Manny, and he and Gary Sheffield were the two most "hang on a second, I got to watch this at bat," players in baseball for a decade.

Apr 08, 2011 18:59 PM
rating: 2
 
JukeboxHero

The vitriolic rhetoric against Manny is shameful, misinformed, and spewed by people who like to pretend baseball is akin to politics or religion. Manny understands that baseball is only two things, entertainment and business, and he was excellent at both.

The garbage talk about ruining teams, disgracing the game, and not meeting potential is asinine. He was true to his personality, like it or not, while delivering on the entertainment and business ends.

Finally, it is SO easy to judge, to criticize, and to mock but I doubt very highly that many people will have as much fun while making as much money as he did. And I for one enjoyed watching him do it.

Thanks for the titles Manny.

Apr 08, 2011 20:57 PM
rating: 7
 
BrownianNotion

Very well said. Seconded on all accounts. Except the titles part, as I'm a Twins fan and not a Sox fan.

Apr 08, 2011 21:09 PM
rating: 3
 
Brian Hays

There is a motto to live by that I can't take credit for...there are two types of people in this world. Those that want to hang out with Manny Ramirez and those that don't.

I would love to hang out with Manny.

Apr 08, 2011 21:37 PM
rating: 6
 
ScottyB

One can admire his achievements but not like the man. i see no disconnect.

Apr 09, 2011 09:52 AM
rating: 2
 
JukeboxHero

And one can be a hypocrite as well. If you lived under a microscope with the truth, lies, and everything in between broadcast to an ignorant public, you would admit to knowing nothing of the man himself, and then excuse yourself for making such a statement. People mistake knowing something about a person by reading what makes the mainstream media. You judge so easily pretending to understand something which you don't. Please do not even throw out words like "professional" either, for it is a mask placed upon certain players to convince the gullible of an untruth.

Apr 10, 2011 17:17 PM
rating: 1
 
ScottyB

I'm not sure why the fact that I do not like Ramirez is such an intolerable idea to you. I admire Ty Cobb's achievements and not the person, as well. Why is this hypocritical?

Apr 12, 2011 11:04 AM
rating: 2
 
R.A.Wagman

Does this mean the current drug program is working? Or had Manny poorly hid what others have been more successful at concealing?

Apr 08, 2011 21:31 PM
rating: 1
 
Lou Doench

I would think that it's the former. As a previous "offender" and a highly paid player, I would think that Manny would be one of the players most likely to be able to skirt the system if he so chose.

His HoF case is going to be very interesting. A lot will hinge on how the voters treat Sammy Sosa and Barry Bonds.

Apr 09, 2011 05:52 AM
rating: 0
 
NHLfan98

"Great hitter" or "Really Good Enhanced Hitter"? I was a big Manny fan when he was in the Cleveland farm system and was thrilled to see him have a great career through the years. But I have to say that my opinion is that he was great because he was juiced like many of the late-90's early 00's players. The timing of his excellent seasons, including the Dodgers late season run, seems a bit too coincidental, no?

Apr 09, 2011 06:19 AM
rating: -2
 
Drungo

There's no doubt Manny was a great hitter. How much of that greatness is attributable to PEDs is probably forever unknowable.

Apr 12, 2011 09:25 AM
rating: 0
 
jj0501

No way on HOF for Manny. Or Barry. No matter what the home
town jury decides. They just got greedy. They had the race won without getting the "boost".

Apr 09, 2011 06:26 AM
rating: -1
 
JukeboxHero

Funny also how the vilified players are usually non-white. Disregard the statement with platitudes about "the race card" but look at how Bonds and Ramirez are treated as compared to other players. I would hope you would lump ALL accused, admitted, or suspected steroid users in with your HOF judgement. Otherwise the statement holds no weight.

Apr 10, 2011 17:20 PM
rating: -1
 
ScottyB

Actually, have you heard of Roger Clemens, mark McGwire or Jeff Bagwell?

Also, I think there is a big difference among:
-Suspected with no evidence against them: Bagwell, Piazza
-Those with evidence against them: Sosa, Bonds, Sheffield, Pettite
-Those who failed post-2004 drug tests: Palmeiro, Ramirez

It is a perfectly legitimate position to say that the last category can have its PED use used against them for HOF purposes, while not holding the others to the same penalty.

Apr 12, 2011 11:02 AM
rating: 0
 
tonyfranco

Ramirez is actually in his own category. Those that have failed the PED test not once, not twice, but three times!!

Apr 12, 2011 11:30 AM
rating: -1
 
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Premium Article Future Shock: An Ideal... (04/07)
<< Previous Column
Transaction Analysis B... (04/06)
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