Lil’ Ron Washington will be part of pregame at World Series

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This picture of a second grader dressed as Rangers manager Ron Washington got a lot of play on the worldwide web this past week.

It also got the Rangers’ attention and they have invited the young man, seven-year-old Liam Roybal, to exclaim “Play Ball!” before Sunday’s World Series Game 3 in Texas.

Leigh Munsil of The Dallas Morning News caught up with Roybal this weekend.  He first wore the costume at a church festival in the Dallas area and then at a Career Day.  His parents eventually posted pictures of the getup on Facebook, and it spread from there.

“He is absolutely excited, he’s kind of bouncing off the walls right now,” mother Ami Roybal said.  “We all sat around the table and laughed about it. We said, ‘You might really look like Ron Washington when you shave your head.'”

And he most definitely does.  Lineups and pregame notes should be coming out shortly for Game 4.

Alex Dickerson to miss 2017 season after undergoing back surgery

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Padres’ outfielder Alex Dickerson won’t see PETCO Park anytime soon — at least, not as its starting left fielder. The 27-year-old was diagnosed with a bulging disc in his lower back prior to the start of the 2017 season, and hasn’t made any kind of substantial progress in the months since. According to Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune, he suffered a setback in his recovery process last week and is set to undergo a season-ending discectomy next Wednesday.

Over 285 plate appearances, Dickerson batted .257/.333/.455 with 10 home runs and a .788 OPS for the Padres in 2016. He missed several days with a right hip contusion last July, but hasn’t experienced any substantial health problems since undergoing surgery in 2014 to repair a torn ligament in his left ankle.

The expected recovery period for lower back surgery is 3-4 months, according to Lin, which puts Dickerson’s estimated return just a few days before the end of the regular season. The Padres aren’t scraping the bottom of the NL West, but their 29-44 record doesn’t bode well for a postseason run this year. Assuming Dickerson rehabs his back in a timely manner, he should be in fine form to enter the competition for left field next spring.

Video: Hanley Ramirez’s No. 250 career home run barely left the field

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Hanley Ramirez played a pivotal role during the Red Sox’ 9-4 win over the Angels on Friday night, crushing a two-run homer off of Alex Meyer to bring the Sox up to a four-run lead in the fourth inning.

Well, crushed might be the wrong word. The ball cleared the right field fence with a mere 350 feet, landing just beyond Pesky’s Pole to bring Ramirez’s career home run total to an even 250.

According to the ESPN Home Run Tracker, Ramirez’s milestone blast wasn’t the shortest home run of the year — not by a long shot. That distinction currently belongs to Rays’ outfielder Corey Dickerson, who skimmed the left field fence at Rogers Centre with a 326-foot homer back in April.