Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Hanley Ramirez talks about the trade / Plus other thoughts

Hanley Ramirez talks about the trade. 

Video -

I like this trade. It's a risk but I don't mind. The Dodgers didn't give up too much. Ramirez is signed through 2014.

Check out his career stats, it's impressive. {linked here}

He's having a down season. Batting .247. We know he can improve that since he won a batting title in 2009.

It  seemed he wasn't too happy playing third base for the Marlins. Do the Dodgers give him the shortstop job the rest of the year? What happens when Dee Gordon returns? I guess having Ramirez at third is a better option than Juan Uribe.

Two weeks ago Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen was upset at Ramirez over a "stupid" injury". Called it a very immature incident. Told reporters that Ramirez is not a kid.

Video -

Hopefully nothing like this happens here. Maybe a fresh start is what Ramirez needs. Plus I have confidence that Don Mattingly can help him. Look at what Mattingly did for Matt Kemp.

What others are saying about this trade....

From Mike Scioscia's Tragic Illness - {linked here}

As for Ramirez, there’s risk here for sure. He’ll be 29 in December, and from 2007-10 he was an MVP caliber player, mixing power, on-base skills, and speed together to make for a very productive package, though he was probably always miscast as a shortstop. Last year, slowed by back and shoulder injuries, was nothing short of a disaster, as he played in just 92 games, hit .243/.333/.379, and probably got his manager fired. After an offseason dispute with the Marlins about moving to third base, he was expected to bounce back in a healthy 2012, but has hit only .246/.322/.428 and has recently missed time after a bizarre incident in which he cut himself on a fan and then didn’t take antibiotics, leading to infection. Ramirez is signed through 2014 with something like $36m remaining, which the Dodgers will apparently be paying all of.

So the concern is obvious: Ramirez is expensive, moody, and a poor defender. (Why does that sound so familiar?) Yet he’s on the right side of 30 and undeniably talented, and players like that rarely come available in the free market. Offense, particularly infield offense, is so hard to find these days that you’re going to have to take some risks in order to try to find production. The hope is that Ramirez can be a good change-of-scenery guy, and while his attitude is indeed a concern, running a solid clubhouse is one area where Don Mattingly has proven to be adept. It remains to be seen where Ramirez plays, but my guess is he’ll stay at third for now, since he’s hardly a top defensive shortstop and since Luis Cruz has been an adequate fill-in, especially with the glove.

From Chad Moriyama - {linked here}

Regardless of what position he ends up playing, Hanley figures to be a gigantic improvement over the unholy combination of Juan Uribe, Dee Gordon, Adam Kennedy, Elian Herrera, and Luis Cruz. The production the Dodgers are getting from both 3B and SS is just terrible, and it’s not like they were playing quality defense either, so Hanley’s questionable glove shouldn’t burn the team too often. 

While I am admittedly excited by the gigantic upside of this deal if Hanley figures it out again, it’s not without risk. After all, there’s a reason the Marlins let him walk with 2 1/2 years of team control remaining. 

First of all, Hanley is signed through 2014 and is still owed $31 million over the next two years, including whatever he’s still owed in 2012. Additionally, his batting line has been woeful (by his standards) since 2010, clocking in at .245/.328/.405/.732. Plus, as I mentioned, he’s not a good defender, regardless of where he plays, and there are very real concerns about his motivation and happiness. Normally I would dismiss this as media inflated crap due to him under-performing, but then I consider that his hand got infected because he forgot to take his antibiotics, and you start to wonder.

I have a feeling this will work out!

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