Manny Ramirez singles and walks in his first Triple-A game

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Woke up this morning vaguely thinking that the whole Manny Ramirez thing was merely a dream. Was sad until I saw this story in the Dallas Morning News which reminded me that, nope, it’s not a dream:

Manny Ramirez singled in three at-bats and walked once in his return to organized baseball with Triple-A Round Rock of the Rangers’ organization on Sunday night. Ramirez, a 12-time American League All-Star, singled in his first at-bat against hard-throwing right-hander Yordano Ventura with Omaha, of the Kansas City organization. Ramirez grounded into a fielder’s choice and struck out in four pitches in his next two at-bats.

There’s no timetable for Ramirez. And no risk for the Rangers. If he rakes like mad, fine, he can force his way onto the big league roster. If he’s no good or acts out or anything they can release him. Personally I want to see him play because, you know, Manny. But it seems like such a no-brainer to at least see what he has left.

Also: click through to the DMN article to see what Manny with (sorta) short hair an graying temples looks like.

Mike Trout has a torn thumb ligament, could require surgery

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Yesterday Mike Trout left the Marlins-Angels game after hurting his thumb while sliding head first into second base. After the game the Angels talked about it as if it were just a sprain. Trout had an MRI today, however, and the diagnosis is far worse: he has a torn thumb ligament.

While a treatment option has not yet been chosen, surgery is a possibility. A certainty is that he’ll miss, at the very least, several weeks of play. He has been placed on the disabled list for the first time in his career.

Trout, the reigning AL MVP and, without question, the best player in baseball, is batting .337/.461/.742 with 16 home runs, 36 RBI, 36 runs scored, and 10 stolen bases in 206 plate appearances this season. Even with the one of the weaker supporting casts in baseball, Trout had the Angels near .500 and in at least arguable contention in the AL West.

Without him, they are likely sunk. Without him, baseball is worse off.

Basebrawl! Harper, Strickland punch away, Nats-Giants fight

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SAN FRANCISCO — Nationals slugger Bryce Harper and San Francisco reliever Hunter Strickland both landed punches to the head during a wild brawl that erupted Monday after a hit by pitch.

Harper was hit in the right hip by Strickland’s 98 mph fastball in the eighth inning with Washington ahead 2-0.

Harper pointed the bat toward Strickland, charged the mound and fired his batting helmet wide of the pitcher. They started to swing away and they each connected as the benches and bullpens emptied.

At least two Giants players forcefully dragged Strickland from the middle of the brawl all the way into the dugout. Harper and Strickland were both ejected.

In the 2014 NL Division Series, Harper hit two home runs off Strickland. After the star’s second shot, in Game 4, he stared at Strickland as he rounded the bases.