Hanley Ramirez is digging himself a deeper hole

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Hanley Ramirez loafing.jpgUPDATE: Here’s a transcript of Ramirez’s whole session with the media and additional comments from “clubhouse leader” Wes Helms.  Quick take: why would a reporter ask Ramirez if he had lose respect for Fredi Gonzalez? Sure, Ramirez could have answered it any way he wanted to, but that’s awfully leading, isn’t it?  That aside, it’s not like Ramirez was taken out of context or anything.  What started as a booted ball and a a moment of hustle impairment has revealed what is apparently a deeply divided clubhouse.  Stay tuned, kids, because this is about to get interesting.

10:50 A.M. OK, it was bad enough that he got sent packing from last night’s game, but now Hanley Ramirez is just going nuts.  According to Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post, Ramirez told reporters Tuesday morning that he “lost some
respect” for manager Fredi Gonzalez after Monday’s benching.

To which I’d respond: if you had any respect for him to begin with, Hanley, you wouldn’t have loafed after that ball to begin with. Our respect for you, however, is plummeting quite quickly, thank you.

Ramirez also
said that
Gonzalez
doesn’t understand playing through
pain because “he never played in the big leagues,” which may as well be code for “I don’t feel like I have to listen to anything my manager says because that excuse applies to absolutely everything.”

According to Capozzi’s game story last night, Marlins’ owner Jeff Loria was in Fredi Gonzalez’s office after the game.  How happy would Loria be if he had a legitimate excuse — say, clubhouse chaos — for trying to unload Hanley Ramirez’s $70 million contract?

And yes, I realize that would be monumentally stupid form a competitive point of view. But it is Jeff Loria we’re talking about here, and he’s not exactly immune from letting financial considerations trump competitive ones.  You can’t tell me that the thought hasn’t crossed his mind.

Trevor May joins eSports team Luminosity

CLEVELAND, OH - AUGUST 04: Trevor May #65 of the Minnesota Twins pitches against the Cleveland Indians in the sixth inning at Progressive Field on August 4, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Indians defeated the Twins 9-2.  (Photo by David Maxwell/Getty Images)
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When he’s not throwing baseballs, Twins pitcher Trevor May is an active gamer. He streams on Twitch, a very popular video game streaming site, fairly regularly and now he’s officially on an eSports team. Luminosity Gaming announced the organization added May last Friday. It appears he’ll be streaming and commentating on Overwatch, a multiplayer first-person shooter made by Blizzard Entertainment.

May is the only current athlete to be an active member of an eSports team. Former NBA player Rick Fox owns Echo Fox, an eSports team that sports players in games including League of Legends, Super Smash Bros. Melee, Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, Street Fighter V, Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, and Mortal Kombat X. Jazz forward Gordon Hayward is also a known advocate of eSports.

The NBA in particular has been very active on the eSports front. Kings co-owners Andy Miller and Mark Mastrov launched NRG eSports in November 2015. Shortly thereafter, Grizzlies co-owner Stephen Kaplan invested in the Immortals eSports team. Almost a year later, the 76ers acquired controlling stakes in Team Dignitas and Team Apex. The same month, the Wizards’ and Warriors’ owners launched a group called Axiomatic, which purchased a controlling stake in Team Liquid, a long-time Starcraft: Brood War website which has since branched out into other games. And also in September 2016, Celtics forward Jonas Jerebko bought team Renegades, moving them to a group house in Detroit. In December 2016, the Bucks submitted a deal to Riot Games in order to purchase Cloud9’s Challenger league spot for $2.5 million. The Rockets that month hired someone specifically for eSports development, focusing on strategy and investment. Last month, the Heat acquired a controlling stake in team Misfits.

Once an afterthought, eSports has grown considerably in recent years and now it should be considered a competitor to traditional sports. League of Legends, in particular, is quite popular, reaching nearly 15 million concurrent viewers at its peak in the most recent League of Legends World Championship. That championship featured a prize purse of $6.7 million with $2 million of it being split among winner SK Telecom T1’s members.

Orioles re-sign Michael Bourn to a minor league deal

TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 04:  Michael Bourn #1 of the Baltimore Orioles hits a single in the fifth inning against the Toronto Blue Jays during the American League Wild Card game at Rogers Centre on October 4, 2016 in Toronto, Canada.  (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images
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The Orioles have re-signed outfielder Michael Bourn to a minor league contract with an invitation to major league camp, MASN’s Roch Kubatko reports.

Bourn, 34, joined the Orioles last year in a trade from the Diamondbacks on August 31. Though he compiled a meager .669 OPS with the Diamondbacks, Bourn hit a solid .283/.358/.435 in 55 plate appearances with the O’s through the end of the season.

Bourn, a non-roster invitee to camp, will try to play his way onto the Orioles’ 25-man roster. If he does make the roster, Bourn will receive a $2 million salary, Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports points out.