5:35 p.m. EST update: Marlins president David Samson said there’s no truth to this at all; that Ramirez didn’t ask for his contract to be restructured and that there will be no trade.
4:30 p.m. EST update: Andy Mota, Ramirez’s agent, told the Miami Herald’s Clark Spencer that Olney was way off with his report. He says Ramirez did not ask for a restructured contract and that the team is not exploring trades. “Not even close,” Mota said.
A source tells ESPN’s Buster Olney that the Marlins will look to trade Hanley Ramirez after the disgruntled infielder requested a restructured deal from the team.
Ramirez is upset about being asked to move to third base from shortstop to make room for Jose Reyes, but he doesn’t have a leg to stand on here. He’s already guaranteed $46.5 million over the next three years, and his play the last two seasons certainly doesn’t warrant any new considerations. Ramirez looked like he’d be a perennial MVP candidate after an awesome three-year run in his mid-20s, but his OPS has dropped from .954 to .853 to .712 since 2009.
Olney speculates that the Marlins, knowing that they would shed Ramirez’s salary, could sign Prince Fielder and either C.J. Wilson or Mark Buehrle in the next few days. They’ve already made a six-year offer to Wilson and a four-year proposal to Buehrle.
The Red Sox and Tigers are two of the teams that could be interested in taking on Ramirez’s contract.
This is more significant for basketball fans than baseball fans, but Magic Johnson is taking over basketball operations for the Los Angeles Lakers. Dan Feldman over at PBT has the full story on that.
For our purposes, you probably know that Johnson is part of the Dodgers ownership group. Anthony McCullough of the L.A. Times got comment from the Dodgers, saying that despite his new full-time job, his status with the Dodgers will be unchanged:
Maybe I’m alone in this, but I’m not entirely certain what Magic does with the Lakers, so the first clause in Kasten’s comment may be doing most of the heavy lifting here.
Jon Heyman reports that the Nationals are closing in on a deal with catcher Matt Wieters. Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that it’s a two-year deal. UPDATE: Ken Rosenthal reports that the deal is for two years, at $21 million. There is an opt-out for him after year one. He will get $10 million in 2017 and, if he returns in 2018, he’ll get $11 million.
Wieters was not expected to go this long without signing, but his market, which many thought would be robust, never materialized. The Nats had been rumored to be interested for months, but they were apparently waiting to swoop in late and get what one presumes will be a bargain.
Wieters, 30, finished last season hitting .243/.302/.409 with 17 home runs and 66 RBI in 464 plate appearances. The Nationals currently have Derek Norris and Jose Lobaton, so who falls where in the catcher fight in Washington is unclear, but one presumes that Wieters getting a two-year deal puts him at the top of the depth chart.