Hanley Ramirez will play tonight despite rib fracture; Andre Ethier also in lineup

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Contrary to the nightmare scenario of our last post, Dodgers fans will not be subjected to Michael Young at shortstop. After testing his rib fracture by fielding grounders and taking batting practice, Hanley Ramirez told reporters that he will be in the lineup tonight for Game 3 of the NLCS against the Cardinals.

Courtesy of the Dodgers’ Twitter account, here’s a look at the padding that Ramirez will be wearing under his uniform:

There’s no official decision on Andre Ethier yet, but Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register passes along word that he tested his ankle this afternoon and plans to tell Dodgers manager Don Mattingly that he wants to play. Having both Ramirez and Ethier back would be a big boost for a lineup which hasn’t scored a run in 19 innings.

UPDATE: It’s official. The Dodgers just announced that Andre Ethier will also be in the lineup.

Rays’ Erik Neander named Executive of the Year

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At the GM meetings in Scottsdale, Arizona on Monday, Rays GM Erik Neander was named the recipient of Major League Baseball’s Executive of the Year Award for the 2019 season. The Yankees’ Brian Cashman was the runner-up while the Athletics’ Billy Beane and the Twins’ Derek Falvey tied for third place.

Neander has worked for the Rays since 2017 but has operated in his current role since November 2016, taking over for Matthew Silverman who was promoted to president of the Rays alongside Brian Auld.

The Rays had, by far, the lowest payroll in baseball at $53.5 million, according to USA TODAY. Neander’s peers voting him Executive of the Year on the same today the league had to curtail its awarding of a prize belt to the team that suppressed salaries the most in arbitration is… certainly interesting timing.

At any rate, Neander’s Rays went 96-66 in 2019, finishing in second place in the AL East behind the 103-59 Yankees. The Rays claimed the second AL Wild Card and defeated the A’s to earn entry into the ALDS where they lost in five games to the Astros. It was the Rays’ first playoff appearance since 2013 and their regular season win total was second-most in franchise history behind the 2008 team (97).