And I want a pony:
I think Japan may be a reach.
Ramirez has had multiple chances to show he has something left in the tank in recent years and he’s shown nothing. Both the A’s and Rangers gave him looks in Triple-A and neither thought he could help them. He had a .697 OPS in 69 plate appearances in Sacramento in 2012 and a .698 OPS in 119 plate appearances for Round Rock in 2013. That’s the sound of a 41 year-old man finding his level. Ramirez knocked the cover off the ball in Taiwan last season. That’s probably also his level.
It’s been real, Manny. But it’s over.
Free agent right-hander Henderson Alvarez signed a deal with the Tigres de Quintana Roo of the Mexican Baseball League earlier this week, FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Friday. The righty wasn’t necessarily too fringey a player to hack it in the big leagues, but there were no MLB takers in attendance during his showcase in Venezuela last month and he clearly felt it best to try his luck elsewhere.
The 27-year-old’s last major league gig came with the Phillies, for whom he delivered a 4.30 ERA, 6.8 BB/9 and 3.7 SO/9 over 14 2/3 innings in 2017. While he’s not too far removed from his first and only All-Star bid in 2014, he was besieged by shoulder issues in 2015 and 2016 and underwent season-ending surgeries as a result.
That added injury risk, coupled with the fact that he hasn’t pitched more than 22 innings in a single season since 2014, may have been too much for major league teams to take on this spring. Assuming he steers clear of further injuries, however, a return to the majors may not be entirely out of the question in years to come.