Manny Ramirez signs with the Oakland Athletics

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We’ve seen this coming for a while, but it appears to actually be happening now. Manny Ramirez is signing with the Oakland A’s:

Manny Ramirez told ESPN’s Pedro Gomez on Monday that he has agreed to a deal with the Oakland Athletics. Sources tell Gomez the deal is worth about $500,000.

Ramirez will have to sit for 50 games due to his drug suspension, of course. And then he will have to earn time on a team that has about 600 dudes who can DH or play a corner outfield position.

But hey: we get to see Manny in a new uniform, and that’s always fun, right?

Jim Hickey steps down as Cubs’ pitching coach

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The Cubs announced on Tuesday that Jim Hickey has stepped down as the pitching coach due to personal reasons. The club will begin a search for a replacement.

Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein said in a statement, “Jim Hickey notified us yesterday of his decision to step down as pitching coach and leave the organization for personal reasons. We thank Jim for his season with the Cubs and his positive impact on our pitchers. Jim has our full support and we all wish him well.”

Hickey, 57, spent over a decade as a coach in the Rays organization before joining the Cubs for the past season, reuniting with Joe Maddon. The Cubs’ starting staff ranked 10th among all 30 teams with a 3.84 ERA and the bullpen posted an NL-best 3.35 ERA.