Why did Hanley Ramirez apologize to his manager and teammates yesterday? Partially, I bet, to get back in the lineup, and partially, I hope, because he realized he was being a jerk. But according to a tweet from Peter Gammons last night, a lot of it may have had to do with Big Papi:
David Ortiz’s Tuesday text exchanges with Hanley
Ramirez convinced Hanley to appologize and move on
Given that Ortiz was quoted yesterday as being critical of the way Fredi Gonzalez was handling the whole affair — a take with which I agreed — this was a nice stroke of pragmatism from the big guy.
Of course, if Gammons was right and Ortiz’s texts — and not his manager’s statements — were the prime motivator, we shouldn’t hold our breaths for a new Hanley Ramirez to emerge from this experience. Ramirez’s takeway from this was probably more about how to go along to get along, not about playing hard and respecting authority figures.
UPDATE: I had missed this, but apparently a stern talking-to by Andre Dawson and Tony Perez helped matters as well.
As is offseason tradition, the first of player-shape reports are trickling in. These usually use some variation of the phrase “best shape of [my/his] life.” This one, though, avoids that at least.
According to ESPN’s Jesse Rogers, Cubs outfielder Kyle Schwarber has lost 17-20 pounds so far this offseason. Schwarber said that he’s “already big and strong,” so “might as well try to get more explosive, faster.”
Though Schwarber knocked out 30 home runs this past season, his numbers were otherwise pedestrian. He hit .211/.315/.467 with 59 RBI and 67 runs scored in 486 plate appearances.
There has been some speculation that the Cubs will try to trade Schwarber to an American League team where he can be a DH. He’s a subpar defender, so making him a full-time DH makes a lot of sense. So far, though, the only team that has been linked to Schwarber this offseason has been the Red Sox.