Wilson Ramos was in the Aragua Tigers’ lineup last night, returning to Venezuelan winter ball action 13 days after being kidnapped at gunpoint and rescued by police 51 hours later.
Ramos went 0-for-5 as the Tigers’ designated hitter and cleanup man.
Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo said last week that he supported Ramos’ decision to remain in Venezuela and continue playing winter ball, but Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post reports that the 24-year-old catcher returned to the United States in the meantime to be examined by team doctors.
Ramos was also expected to meet with a specialist for traumatic incidents and according to Kilgore there was extra security in place last night. At no point has Ramos expressed fear of being involved in another abduction, which makes him a whole lot braver than me.
The Orioles singlehandedly kept the rumor mill churning this weekend. MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that the club is interested in making a play for free agent right-hander Lance Lynn, adding him to a list of potential candidates that also includes free agent righty Alex Cobb. The two are expected to command similar contracts in free agency, but Morosi notes that the Orioles may prefer Cobb based on his familiarity with the AL East.
Lynn, 30, is two years removed from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. Despite missing the 2016 season, he bounced back with a respectable 11-8 record in 33 starts and complemented his efforts with a 3.43 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 7.4 SO/9 over 186 1/3 innings for the 2017 Cardinals. He lost several days with a blister on his pitching hand in early September, but managed to avoid any major injuries and can reasonably be expected to shoulder another heavy workload in 2018.
Lynn may not be the Orioles’ first choice to beef up their starting rotation, but there’s no doubt that he’ll be in high demand as one of very few viable starters on the market this winter. The veteran righty rejected his one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Cardinals on Thursday and will likely be seeking a multi-year contract, one that Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch estimates around five years and $100+ million. If the Orioles are willing to bite that bullet, they’ll still need to compensate the Cardinals with their third pick in next year’s draft.