Manny Ramirez: “we are the working class”

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With the large caveat that there is a very good chance Enrique Rojas’ interview with Manny Ramirez was conducted in Spanish and that the translation of it here inadvertently imposes a subtext to his comment that was not at all his intention, I can’t wipe the grin off my face at this comment, offered in response to the question of whether Ramirez would consider playing in Japan if he can’t get a major league deal:

“We are the working class and wherever there is work, you must go work.”

A working class hero is something to be. If you wanna be a hero well just follow Manny. Just forget that he made more than $200 million playing baseball in his career.

My little college hangover commie/class fixation notwithstanding, it’s a good interview in which Manny talks about why he retired rather than serve his suspension last season.  I think he’s crazy if he thinks he’s going to have any major league teams calling him, but being realistic has never been his strong suit. And it hasn’t really hurt him much to be honest.

Video: Jake Arrieta hits a 465-foot home run off of Zack Greinke

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Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.

The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.

Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.

Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.

Luis Valbuena to miss four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring

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Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.

Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.

Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.