Cubs third baseman Aramis Ramirez told the media back on July 18 that he would not waive his no-trade clause this month because he didn’t want to relocate his family, specifically his two young sons.
It appears that stance has changed.
According to Bruce Levine of ESPN Chicago, Ramirez said Thursday that he hasn’t been approached by the Cubs’ front office about a trade and would be open to going somewhere else if the club decides that it wants to begin rebuilding.
“Nobody has come forward from the team, [and said] ‘We want to trade you,”’ Ramirez told Levine. “That’s only in the media. [GM] Jim [Hendry] hasn’t said anything about trading me. Or what’s the other guy, [team president Crane] Kenney? Nobody has asked me to waive my no-trade clause. Hey, nobody wants me. They want good players. If they come to me with a trade, we’ll see. But nobody has talked to me about it.”
“That’s not a secret, everybody knows [I want to stay]. But if they’re looking to rebuild, I can’t fit in, so we’ll see.”
The Cubs would likely have to eat a significant portion of Ramirez’s remaining salary in order to pull off a trade, but they should have options. The Angels were known to have some level of interest earlier this month.
Ramirez, 33, is batting .293/.334/.510 this season with 19 home runs and 63 RBI through 99 games played. He’s earning $14.6 million this year via a player option and has a $16 million club option for 2012.
Padres starter Jered Weaver lasted just two-thirds of an inning in Wednesday afternoon’s Cactus League appearance against the Royals. He yielded four runs on three hits, throwing 31 pitches before getting pulled. His spring ERA now sits at an ugly 10.13.
Weaver said he’s been dealing with a “dead arm” since his last bullpen session, but added he’s dealt with the issue in previous springs, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports.
The Padres signed Weaver to a one-year, $3 million contract last month. The right-hander is coming off of the worst season of his 11-year career. His fastball averaged a career-low 83 MPH and he put up a 5.06 ERA with a 103/51 K/BB ratio in 178 innings.
Earlier, Craig wrote about Dan Duquette’s dogwhistle language in his criticism of Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista. We have some more dogwhistling, this time coming from Tigers (and Team U.S.) second baseman Ian Kinsler. Via Billy Witz of The New York Times:
I hope kids watching the W.B.C. can watch the way we play the game and appreciate the way we play the game as opposed to the way Puerto Rico plays or the Dominican plays. That’s not taking anything away from them. That just wasn’t the way we were raised. They were raised differently and to show emotion and passion when you play. We do show emotion; we do show passion. But we just do it in a different way.
The goal of the World Baseball Classic, created by Major League Baseball, is to promote baseball across the globe. It’s players like Puerto Rico’s Javier Baez who are doing the best job in that regard, not boring white guys from the U.S. Potential baseball fans are not swayed into liking the sport when a player hits a home run and solemnly puts his head down to stroll the bases. They get excited and energized when players show emotion, flip their bats, celebrate. Baez did more to make baseball appeal to new and lapsed audiences with his premature celebration tag than the entire U.S. team has done this tournament.
Furthermore, it is hypocritical to want to diversify the sport’s audience while squelching incoming cultures.
Jim Leyland also got in on the action:
Go Puerto Rico.