Rangers have “no plans” to call up Manny Ramirez

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Manny Ramirez is 9-for-30 (.300) with three homers and a .964 OPS in nine games at Triple-A, but T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com reports that the Rangers have “no plans to bring him to the big leagues after the All-Star game.”

Lance Berkman is expected back from the disabled list next week, at which point the Rangers will no longer have an immediate need at designated hitter. And they’d probably want Ramirez to hit well for more than 30 at-bats regardless of Berkman’s situation.

Ramirez, who signed a minor-league deal with the Rangers on July 3 and underwent a random drug test at Triple-A less than a week later, hit .352 in 49 games in Taiwan before returning to the United States.

Cubs acquire Martín Maldonado from the Royals

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Last night Cubs catcher Willson Contreras was placed on the injured list with a strained muscle in his right foot. That injury inspired the Cubs to go out and get another catcher. They acquired Martín Maldonado in a trade with Kansas City in exchange for lefty Mike Montgomery, in a deal that was announced after the Cubs loss to the Reds.

Maldonado, 32, was a Gold Glove winner in 2017 with the Angels. At the moment he’s hitting .227 with six homers and 17 RBIs in 74 games. Obviously, though, defense is his calling card, as he’s a .220 career hitter with 57 homers and 210 RBIs in 686 games.

Montgomery, 30, is 1-2 with a 5.67 ERA in 20 relief appearances for the Cubs this year. He’s heading back to where his pro career began. He was drafted by Kanas City in 2008, though he was traded away in the James Shields/Wade David/Wil Myers deal in 2012. He made his big league debut for Seattle in 2015. Dayton Moore said last night that the Royals plan to use Montgomery in the rotation as a replacement for Homer Bailey, who was dealt to Oakland on Sunday.