Fredi Gonzalez benched Hanley Ramirez last night and the Marlins won thanks in part to two RBIs from his replacement, but the manager said during a radio interview this morning that he “would be really surprised” if Ramirez isn’t back in the lineup tonight against the Cardinals.
It’s going to get resolved one way or the other today. I would be really surprised if he’s not in the lineup today. We’ll take care of it and he’ll be in the three hole and playing shortstop.
However, he said “not yet” when asked if Ramirez has followed through on Gonzalez’s demand that he apologize to the team.
I expect him to do it. I expect him to do the right thing, but I think he needs to address his teammates a little bit. When that happens, we are good to go.
Reading between the lines, that sure sounds like Gonzalez is still sticking with his demand that Ramirez apologize before playing again and is simply assuming the All-Star shortstop will comply by tonight’s game (and applying some subtle pressure in the process). Based on Ramirez’s actions so far that seems like a leap of faith, but I guess we’ll find out soon enough.
The Braves have signed former football player and current outfielder Sanders Commings, an Augusta, Georgia native, to a minor league contract, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports.
Commings, 26, was a defensive back who played for the University of Georgia before being selected by the Chiefs in the fifth round of the 2013 draft. He appeared in two games in the 2013 season.
Commings also played baseball for Westside High School and was selected by the Diamondbacks in the 37th round of the 2008 draft. He chose to attend the University of Georgia instead. When football didn’t pan out, Commings started training with Jerry Hairston, Jr. Hairston said he was “blown away” when he saw Commings hit for the first time.
Obviously, Commings’ path to success as a professional baseball player will be long, but it’s a no-risk flier for the Braves. The club has past experience with football players, including Deion Sanders and Brian Jordan.
The next task for the Braves will be to acquire Ryan Goins from the Blue Jays. That way, players will look at the lineup card each day to see if it’s Commings or Goins.
On Thursday afternoon, Rays pitcher Chris Archer asked his Twitter followers, “Lots swirling around what needs to be changed about the game of baseball. What do y’all want to see changed, if anything, & why?”
Tigers ace Justin Verlander responded:
To that, Archer said:
For what it’s worth, Verlander hasn’t been much of a hitter. In 47 career plate appearances, he has three singles and no extra-base hits. And if the AL did get rid of the DH rule, the Tigers would have nowhere to put Victor Martinez. Verlander, though, would have an easier time pitching to opposing pitchers rather than their DH’s.