Earlier this week Rangers catcher J.P. Arencibia spoke out about what he believed was unfair treatment by the Toronto media back when he was with the Blue Jays, suggesting that “the media made me out to be a monster” and that played a part in his being let go.
He might have to come up with a similar theory for the Texas media now, because today the Rangers demoted Arencibia to Triple-A less than two months into a one-year, $1.8 million contract.
Arencibia earned the demotion by hitting .133 in 20 games for the Rangers, just as he earned being let go by the Blue Jays by hitting .194 in 138 games last season. He’ll be back in the majors because catchers with 20-homer power are always hard to find, but Arencibia is a career .208 hitter with perhaps MLB’s worst plate discipline. If anything the media has been kind when describing his performance as a big leaguer.
The Boston Red Sox activated Dustin Pedroia from the disabled list today. That’s a big deal. The move they made to make room for him on the roster was a big one too: they designated Hanley Ramirez for assignment. A designation for assignment, of course, means that the Sox have seven days to either trade or release Ramirez.
Ramirez, 34, is experiencing his worst season as a major leaguer thus far, hitting .254/.313/.395 (88 OPS+) in 195 plate appearances as he split time between first base and designated hitter. Given how well Mitch Moreland has hit at first and J.D. Martinez has hit at DH, there is simply no room for Ramirez in the lineup. At the moment the Red Sox have the second best offense in all of baseball despite Ramirez’s performance.
Ramirez, a 14-year big league veteran, won the 2006 Rookie of the Year Award and won the NL batting title in 2009. He has been a below average hitter in three of his last four seasons, however and, long removed from his days as a middle infielder, he has little defensive value these days. That said, his fame and the possibility that he could put together a decent run if used wisely will likely get him some looks from other clubs.