Manny Ramirez hits a homer in his second game with the Iowa Cubs

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Manny Ramirez was signed as a player/coach for the Cubs’ Triple-A affiliate the Iowa Cubs. The Cubs also said that no matter what happens, they are not calling him up to the bigs. He’s there to coach and mentor young players, that’s it. Which is OK. I think Manny showed over the past couple of years that he can’t really cut it anymore. Even against Triple-A pitchers, he’s been pretty much overmatched.

But that’s cool. Because sometimes, when things go just right, he’ll connect. And we’ll get to see homemade video of it to distract us from remembering that Ramiez is basically done as a baseball player:

Like last night:

Rakuten Golden Eagles sign Jabari Blash

Jabari Blash
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Former Angels outfielder Jabari Blash has signed a one-year deal with the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of Nippon Professional Baseball, the team announced Friday. Per the Japan Times, the deal is said to be worth around $1.06 million. Blash was released from his contract with the Angels at the end of November.

The 29-year-old outfielder has had a rough go of it in the majors, where he failed to duplicate the promising results he delivered in the minors. While he consistently batted above .250 with 20-30 home runs per season at the Double- and Triple-A level, he petered out in back-to-back gigs with the Padres and Angels and slumped toward a .103/.200/.128 finish across 45 PA for Anaheim in 2018.

The hope, of course, is that the environment in NPB will help him get a better handle on his issues at the plate — in a best case scenario, resulting in a full-scale transformation that could make him more marketable to MLB teams in the future. To that end, Blash expects to be utilized as a cleanup batter in the Eagles’ lineup and will focus on assisting the club as they make a run toward the Japan Series.