The Dodgers’ decision-makers must be overjoyed with what they’ve seen from Hanley Ramirez since his arrival from the Marlins at last month’s deadline.
The 28-year-old shortstop and third baseman belted two home runs and finished with four RBI in Los Angeles’ 6-2 defeat of the Braves on Saturday night in Atlanta. He’s now batting .330/.392/.549 with four homers and 27 RBI in 23 games with his new team, and has a 1.025 OPS so far in the month of August.
Ramirez was sporting a weak .246/.322/.428 slash line in 395 plate appearances with the Marlins before the four-player trade, which sent 22-year-old starter Nathan Eovaldi and relief prospect Scott McGough to Miami. Randy Choate followed Ramirez out west.
Eovaldi looked sharp while tossing 6 2/3 innings of one-run ball Saturday against the Rockies, but Ramirez is capable of making the Dodgers a big winner if he can keep this pace. L.A. has won 10 of its last 15 and will enter play Sunday just a half-game back of the Giants for first place in the National League West.
Alex Rodriguez’s post-retirement renaissance continues apace. After starring as a studio host for Fox’s playoff coverage over the past couple of years, A-Rod is about to be named to, arguably, televised baseball’s top job: color commentary in ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball booth.
Michael McCarthy of The Sporting News is hearing that ESPN is going to give the gig, vacated by Aaron Boone by virtue of his hiring by the Yankees, to Rodriguez. There he’ll join Jessica Mendoza and whoever they get to replace play-by-play man Dan Shulman, who chose to step back from the Sunday night job following last season. This, by the way, marks the second time A-Rod has taken over Aaron Boone’s job given that he replaced Boone at third base for the Yankees in 2004.
The twist: A-Rod is likely to keep his Fox postseason job too. While some broadcasters work for multiple networks, it’s pretty rare for Fox to allow its talents to work for competitors like that. Apparently they believe keeping A-Rod — who five years ago was one of the most despised figures in baseball — is worth it. What a difference a few years makes.
In other news, Alex Rodriguez is likely to be shunned mightily by the current crop of BBWAA voters when he hits the Hall of Fame ballot in a couple of years. At the rate he’s going, though, their successors will put him in Cooperstown via the Ford Frick Award sometime in the 2040s.