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Category: Manny Ramirez

Manny Ramirez wants to prove himself again


Manny Ramirez wants one more chance. But has he never heard the old saying, "Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me, fool me three times, you must be Manny Ramirez?"

"I want to show people that Manny can change, that he can do the right thing," Ramirez told ESPN. "And to show people that I still can play. I don't want to leave the game like I did. I also want to show my kids that if you make a mistake, don't quit. Just go back and fix it. And if you're going to leave, leave the right way."

Ramirez played in five games for the Tampa Bay Rays in 2011 before retiring after testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs for the second time in his career. Of course, Dodgers fans will remember that Ramirez first tested positive with the Dodgers in 2009. He served a 50-game suspension, which pretty much brought an end to "Mannywood."

"A bunch of guys are going to look at me and say hey, this guy made a mistake but he didn't quit. Look how he finished. He did the right thing and came back," Ramirez told ESPN.

Yeah, I really don't think that's what they will be saying, Manny.



-- Houston Mitchell

Photo: Manny Ramirez with the Dodgers in 2010. Credit: Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times



Manny Ramirez out of jail, ordered to have no contact with wife

Manny Ramirez released from jail

Manny Ramirez was released from Broward County Jail on $2,500 bail Tuesday, a day after being arrested on a domestic-battery charge and accused of slapping his wife at their South Florida home.

The former Dodgers star was ordered by Broward Circuit Judge Jon Hurley to have no direct contact with his wife, Juliana.

Ramirez was met by several family members when he left jail just before noon EDT and had little to say to reporters while getting into a white Cadillac Escalade. "Let me see, where's my family?" he said in response to questions from the gathered media.

One reporter pressed him, saying, "You have to give us something." Ramirez responded, "Not my problem."

He did speak to another TV reporter in Spanish and put his arm around two of the female reporters.

A woman who refused to give her name spoke briefly before rolling up the car window: "He's my brother, we love him no matter what. He's an amazing guy, and we love him no matter what."

Broward County sheriff's officials say the former World Series MVP with the Boston Red Sox slapped his wife's face during an argument Monday, causing her to hit her head on a headboard. Ramirez has denied hitting his wife, authorities say.


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-- Chuck Schilken

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Photo: Manny Ramirez leaves the Broward County Jail. Credit: Joe Cavaretta / South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Poll: Manny Ramirez, Mark McGwire, Pete Rose. Which is more deserving of the Hall of Fame?

Manny Ramirez retired in disgrace today. Mark McGwire is slowly rebuilding his reputation as hitting coach for the St. Louis Cardinals. And Pete Rose bet on baseball. In a perfect world, all would be in baseball's Hall of Fame. But they aren't. McGwire falls short of the required 75% of the vote each year, Rose is ineligible because he was banned from baseball, and Ramirez, though not eligible yet, will probably fall far short of the 75% required when he first appears on the ballot in six years.

But which one would you vote for?


--Houston Mitchell

Manny Ramirez tested positive for a performance-enhancing drug

Fabforum Former Dodgers slugger Manny Ramirez, who signed a one-year, $2-million deal with the Tampa Bay Rays in the off-season, tested positive for a banned substance for the second time and informed Major League Baseball on Friday that he is retiring rather than face a 100-game suspension.

A person familiar with the events that led to the announcement confirmed that Ramirez tested positive for a performance-enhancing drug. The commissioner's office announced Ramirez's decision in a statement, but provided few details. Ramirez previously served a 50-game suspension for violating the drug policy while he was with the Dodgers and second-time offenders get double that penalty.

“Major League Baseball recently notified Manny Ramirez of an issue under Major League Baseball's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program,” the statement said. “Rather than continue with the process under the Program, Ramirez has informed MLB that he is retiring as an active player. If Ramirez seeks reinstatement in the future, the process under the Drug Program will be completed.”

The Rays reacted quickly to the news.

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Manny Ramirez retires after being notified of an issue under MLB's drug policy

Manny_620 Manny Ramirez, a former Dodger who started the season with the Tampa Bay Rays, is retiring after being notified of an issue under Major League Baseball's drug policy.

The commissioner's office issued a statement Friday afternoon that said Ramirez decided to retire rather than go through MLB's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program. Ramirez tested positive for a drug, the name of which has not yet been revealed.

(3:36 p.m. Update: Ramirez tested positive for performance-enhancing drug).

“Rather than continue with the process under the program, Ramirez has informed MLB that he is retiring as an active player,” the league said in a statement. “If Ramirez seeks reinstatement in the future, the process under the drug program will be completed.”

The 38-year-old Ramirez, who was one-for-17 with the Tampa Bay Rays this season, made his name with the Cleveland Indians and Boston Red Sox. He was being booed by fans in Tampa because of his slow start this season. The 12-time All-Star agreed to a $2-million, one-year contract with the Rays in the off-season. 

“The Tampa Bay Rays were informed today by the Commissioner's Office that Manny Ramirez has decided to retire after being informed of an issue under the Drug Program,” the Rays said in a statement. “We are obviously surprised and disappointed by this news. We will have no further comment on this matter, and our fans and organization will carry on.”

Ramirez, who was suspended for 50 games for violating the MLB drug policy while with the Dodgers, would have faced a 100-game suspension if he had not retired.

We will have more on this developing story as it happens on


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--Houston Mitchell

Photo: Manny Ramirez. Credit: Kim Klement / U.S. Presswire.

Angels' Erick Aybar undergoes MRI; Rays bench Manny Ramirez

Photo: Erick Aybar. Credit: Charlie Riedel / AP Brandon Wood is in the lineup for the first time Wednesday as the Angels close out their season-opening six-game road trip with an afternoon game with the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. But that wasn't entirely by design.

Wood is starting at shortstop because regular starter Erick Aybar spent much of Wednesday morning having an MRI taken of his strained left side. Aybar has felt stiffness in his side since bellyflopping into third base in the eighth inning of Saturday's loss in Kansas City. Results of the test were not available Wednesday morning and Aybar's availability for Friday's home opener is uncertain.

Maicer Izturis, who started in Aybar's place the last two games, remained in the leadoff spot as the team's designated hitter. Also, the slumping Vernon Wells (.136) is making his first start in center in place of Peter Bourjos.

On the Tampa side, Manny Ramirez is out of the lineup after striking out three times in four at-bats Tuesday. Ramirez, 1 for 16 (.063) on the season, will  also miss Tampa's first road game Thursday in Chicago to attend to an undisclosed personal matter.

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Tampa honeymoon could be ending for Manny Ramirez

Manny_275 Manny Ramirez's honeymoon with Tampa Bay may be shorter than the Rays' first homestand.

Ramirez, who had been on his best behavior since signing a $2-million free-agent contract with the Rays over the winter, slipped out of the clubhouse before the media were allowed in following Tuesday's 5-3 loss to the Angels. Ramirez was booed lustily while going 0 for 4 with three strikeouts. It was Ramirez's third hitless game in four starts, dropping his season average to .062. (In fairness to Ramirez, he's not the only Ray who is struggling. The team has scored six runs in four games -- all losses -- and is hitting .138. The 0-4 start is the first in team history, which is surprising given the fact the Rays' .438 winning percentage is the worst of any current franchise.)

"I want the fans to know he works. This man really works, this man really cares," Tampa Bay Manager Joe Maddon told reporters. "It's not working for him right now but he's going to be fine. We need to let him be himself and let Manny be Manny and go out there and not try to carry us."

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Question of the day: What is your all-time favorite Manny Ramirez memory? [Updated]


Reporters from Tribune Co. share their favorite memories of Manny Ramirez, who joined the Chicago White Sox on Monday after playing parts of three seasons with the Dodgers.

Dylan Hernandez, Los Angeles Times:

Unless the Dodgers sign Diego Maradona, I doubt I’ll ever cover anyone like Manny again. He was always up to something. I don’t know where to start.

I suppose I could mention something he did in 2008 or the look on Times national writer Bill Shaikin’s face when I told him in the middle of a game that Manny was about to be suspended.

But when I think of Manny, I think most of unpredictability. This was mo better illustrated than when he played for the Dodgers’ triple-A team in Albuquerque before returning from his suspension last year. He played in front of a sold-out crowd for two nights. On the third night, rain fell. Before the game even started, Manny left the packed ballpark without even acknowledging the fans. The team was forced to offer ticket vouchers for future games.

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Just Manyi being Manyi

The banner headline in South Africa's Sunday Times was almost big enough to read from across the room:

"Why Manny was suspended"

What? Has Manny Ramirez found trouble again? And why do they care here?

It took a closer reading to calm the nerves. Turns out the headline said 'Manyi' and it was referring to Jimmy Manyi, director general of the Labor Ministry, who lost his job over his behavior during a meeting in which he upset his boss.

-- Kevin Baxter, reporting from Johannesburg

Will Matsuiland take off like Mannywood?

The Dodgers have Mannywood.

A group of Angels fans is countering with Matsuiland.

The fans sat in the right field stands during the Angels' Freeway League series opener against the Dodgers on Friday, each holding up homemade signs with one of the 10 letters forming the tribute to Angels designated hitter/outfielder Hideki Matsui. They plan to hold up the signs again Monday night in Section 327, Row M, when the Angels open the regular season against the Minnesota Twins.

Matsuiland is Angel fans' version of the Dodgers' section of left field known as Mannywood, named in honor of left fielder Manny Ramirez's Hollywood appeal. The Angels fans have started their own website in honor of Matsui (though it mostly appears to hawk Matsui memorabilia) and hope the Angels come on board with their marketing idea, which they say combines the magic of Matsui and Disneyland.

"Hideki has always impressed us with his humble approach," fan Claude Bilodeau said. "When he played in New York, he was always overshadowed by that big-name roster, and we want him to get his recognition."

Here's one suggestion for Matsuiland: Move it above the Angels' dugout, since that's where Matsui figures to spend most of his time as the team's primary designated hitter.

-- Ben Bolch

Joe Torre speaks on Manny Ramirez and much more

Dodgers Manager Joe Torre spoke up on several topics at the baseball owners’ meetings today:  

Dodgerslogo On whether he has spoken with Manny Ramirez since the season ended: “No. That’s my fault.”

On Ramirez’ marked decline in production after his return of a 50-game drug suspension: “I still feel he wasn’t himself when he came back. At that point, there were 50 games off and then spring training. To me, he was very uncomfortable, trying to recapture what he had. In the clubhouse, he was the same guy. We want that balanced hitter and relaxed guy.”

On whether Ramirez should have played in more than five minor league rehabilitation games: “The thing became a circus anyway. I don’t know if that would have helped.”

On what he expects from Ramirez this season: “I expect him to be back as a middle-of-the-lineup guy.”

On whether he believes Ramirez might be finished as an elite hitter if he is finished with performance-enhancing substances: “I reject that thinking. He was not comfortable, and he was out of balance. His approach, mechanically, was forced. I don’t think his ability is going to fall off. That’s why I am more than hopeful he is going to be able to do this.”  

On Clayton Kershaw: “He’s a legitimate, big-time pitcher. He’s still just 21 years old. We can’t all of a sudden hook our wagon to him and say, ‘Take us there.’ ”  

On what he expects from Chad Billingsley: “To get better. It was really a strange year he had. I think the two injuries really knocked him off his game. He tried to force it. He never got into his rhythm. He had lost his confidence more than anything.”

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