Hanley Ramirez on being back in Boston: “I belong here.”


Hanley Ramirez will be moving from shortstop to left field after signing a four-year, $88 million contract with the Red Sox back in November. Ramirez was asked if he would have moved away from shortstop for any other team, to which he said (via Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald), “I belong here. Anything it takes to go back to Boston.” The Red Sox signed Ramirez as an amateur free agent in 2000 but traded him to the Marlins in the Josh Beckett deal back in 2005.

The Red Sox also signed Pablo Sandoval, so third base was not an option for Ramirez, knowing that shortstop belonged to Xander Bogaerts. As a result, he’ll be patrolling left field at Fenway Park.

Ramirez, 31, had another productive season for the Dodgers, batting .283/.369/.448 with 13 home runs, 71 RBI, and 14 stolen bases in 2014. Though he’s had injury problems — racking up 500-plus plate appearances in only two of the past four seasons — Ramirez is expected to be a regular force in the middle of the lineup in Beantown.

Royals, Alex Gordon close to contract agreement

Alex Gordon
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MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan reports that the Royals and outfielder Alex Gordon are “getting close” to an agreement on a one-year contract. Terms of the deal aren’t yet known, but the Royals could make it official within the next few days.

Gordon, who turns 36 years old next month, hit .266/.345/.396 with 13 home runs and 76 RBI over 633 plate appearances with the Royals this past season. His offense has waned, owning an adjusted OPS of 84 since 2016 (100 is average), but he still plays decent defense.

Gordon has spent all 13 years of his major league career with the Royals. With the club in a rebuilding phase, he will serve as the clubhouse leader and be a mentor to younger players on the roster.