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Muscle Sport Magazine

How Long Before Manny Ramirez Gets Cubs Call-up From Iowa?

The Chicago Cubs have denied that this move was made with the long-term vision of Manny Ramirez being called up from the minor leagues, but the 41-year-old former slugger is certainly looking to showcase his bat for a reason by agreeing to a hitting coach/player contract with the Triple-A Iowa affiliate of the north siders. Since retiring in 2011 following a second violation of Major League Baseball’s PED policy, Ramirez has been reinstated and played with four different organizations (in three different countries) as recently as last  August. So it is blatantly obvious that he still has the itch and it would come as no surprise if he ends up with someone’s big league club – regardless of what both sides are saying right now.

 

“While Manny is not and will not be a fit on the Cubs major league roster, we do think at this stage of his life he’s a nice fit as a mentor for some of the young talented hitters we have in the organization,” Chicago Cubs President of Operations Theo Epstein said in a statement released by the organization. “Manny will coach full-time and play part-time in a limited role that does not take at-bats away from our prospects. If he shows there is still some magic in his bat, perhaps he will find his way to the major leagues and help another team, but that is not why he is here. We are thrilled that he wants to work with our young hitters and make a difference.”

 

“I’m at the stage of my life and career where I really want to give something back to the game that I love – the game that has meant so much to me and done so much for me and my family,” Ramirez said in the same statement. “I know I am nearing the end of my playing days, but I have a lot of knowledge to pass on to the next generation – both what to do and what not to do. The Cubs have some very talented young hitters, and I would love nothing more than to make a positive impact on their careers. I am passionate about baseball and about hitting, and I have a lot to offer. While I would love to return to the major leagues, I leave that in God’s hands. My focus will be on working with the young hitters, making sure they don’t make the same mistakes I made, and helping the team any way I can.”

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Even at this stage of his life, Ramirez would be an interesting hitter at Wrigley Field. Steroids or not, the guy can flat-out hammer the ball and it would be ridiculous to say that career numbers like his (.312, 2,574 hits, 555 home runs, 1,831 RBI) are solely because of his PED use. Currently, the Cubs reside in last place in the National League Central at 18-29, trailing the Milwaukee Brewers by 10 full games.

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In 2009 while with the Dodgers, Ramirez was suspended for 50 games after testing positive for hCG, a female fertility drug commonly used as PCT (post-cycle therapy). Then in 2011 while with the Rays, he tested positive again for a unnamed PED and chose to walk away from the game rather than face a 100-game suspension. He later was reinstated after agreeing to a 50-game ban and in 2012, played 17 games for the Oakland A’s Triple-A affiliate in Sacramento. The following winter, Ramirez played for both the Aguilas Cibaenas of the Dominican Professional Baseball League and the EDA Rhinos of the Chinese Professional Baseball League in Taiwan. Last summer, he played five weeks at the Triple-A level in the Texas Rangers organization.

Ramirez’s 19-year career is best know for his days in Cleveland, Boston and Los Angeles. He spent seven seasons with the Red Sox and the team won two Word Series titles. The GM of that club? None other than Theo Epstein.

 

See you at Wrigley, Manny.

 

Photo by Bill Menzel

 

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