In a move that shocked the baseball world to some degree earlier this week, the Boston Red Sox decided to release slugger Hanley Ramirez who began his big league career with the franchise in 2005, but returned to the team in 2015. After making his debut, he played for the Florida/Miami Marlins from 2006 to 2012, and then was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers where he remained until 2014. He began his career as a shortstop, then played some outfield before the Red Sox moved him to first base in 2015. Since 2017, he’d been the “Bo Sox” designated hitter after the retirement of future Hall of Famer David Ortiz.
With the Red Sox Ramirez won two division titles and made the playoffs in both 2016 and 2017. At 34 years of age, some say he could be ready for retirement himself. While he may not have too many chances to wear his fielding glove these days, he’s still a threat on offense. This year the Dominican Republic native has a slash line of .254/.313/.395/.708 with six home runs, 29 RBI’s, 25 runs scored and four stolen bases.
So for now it appears that he’ll continue to be used as a designated hitter in the American League. With that being said, here are some teams who could make the best use of his services immediately…..
The Chicago White Sox have been without a true designated hitter since 2014 when they had both Adam Dunn and future Hall of Famer Paul Konerko on the roster. Since then it’s been a revolving door on the lineup card for which the team has yet to find a permanent fix. This year that revolving door has consisted of Jose Abreu, Daniel Palka, Matt Skole, Matt Davidson and Avisail Garcia (the latter two of which are currently on the disabled list). Sox general manager Rick Hahn has said that he would like to add another veteran to mix with the younger players as part of the team’s rebuild. Plus, the DH issue must be addressed.
Signing Ramirez would not only provide stability in the batting order but it will also end the revolving door. This will also allow Davidson to return to playing third base full-time where he is most productive. It also wouldn’t be bad idea to have someone like Ramirez in the locker room to help mentor the younger Latino players.
The Seattle Mariners could also use Ramirez’s bat. When Robinson Cano was handed down an 80-game suspension for PED use they lost a major part of their offense in the process. Before the suspension the “M’s” were atop the American League West. Since then, they’ve dropped to second place and trail the defending champion Houston Astros by nearly two games in the standings. Adding Ramirez could offset the loss of Cano to some degree, and give them a proven player who’s familiar with winning division races.
The Minnesota Twins could also be a possibility for Ramirez. At 22-30 their a long shot to win the American League Central, but it’s still a possibility as they only trail the first place Cleveland Indians by 6 1/2 games. They’ve also had a revolving door at the DH slot which has included Joe Mauer, Miguel Sano, Robbie Grossman and Logan Morrison. Collectively these four men have just gone for a combined 122-for-529 at the plate.
Bringing Ramirez to the Twins accomplishes three things; stability in the batting order by making him the everyday DH, gives the team a boost on offense and improves their chances to compete in the division race. Either of these teams would be the perfect landing spot for Ramirez as he still has gas in the tank and can still swing a solid bat.
Hopefully it won’t be too long before Ramirez finds a new home.