Manny Ramirez to play professionally in Japan

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Manny Ramirez to play professionally in Japan

Appartantly being on the Hall of Fame ballot isn't enough for former Red Sox star Manny Ramirez because the 2004 World Series MVP is dusting off the cleats for another go-round, signing with the Kochi Fighting Dogs on Monday.

The right fielder most recently served as a batting consultant to the World Series winning Chicago Cubs, after a turn as a player-coach for the AAA Iowa Cubs in 2014.

Ramirez had 555 career home runs and hit .312 in 19 MLB seasons, but also got in trouble for PED use twice.

The 44-year-old is no spring chicken at this point, so it'll be interesting to see how he fairs in the Shikoku Island League Plus -- a Japanese professional independent league -- after not having played a game since 2014.

Red Sox avoid arbitration with Bogaerts, Holt with 1-year deals

Red Sox avoid arbitration with Bogaerts, Holt with 1-year deals

Facing a 1 p.m. Friday deadline to avoid arbitration, the Red Sox reportedly agreed to a one-year, $3.6 million deal with center field Jackie Bradley Jr., and also avoided hearings with six other players.

Shortstop Xander Bogaerts, utilityman Brock Holt, pitchers Joe Kelly, Robbie Ross Jr., Tyler Thornburgh and catcher Sandy Leon also agreed to one-year deals.

Terms of the deals were not announced.

It leaves left-handers Fernando Abad and Drew Pomeranz as the only arbitration-eligible Red Sox without a deal.  

Report: Bradley Jr. avoids arbitration, agrees to 1-year, $3.6M deal with Red Sox

Report: Bradley Jr. avoids arbitration, agrees to 1-year, $3.6M deal with Red Sox

Red Sox center fielder Jackie Bradley avoided arbitration and agreed to a one-year, $3.6 million deal with the team, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reported.

Bradley, who turns 27 April 19, had his best season in 2016, hitting .267 with 26 homers and a league-best 29-game hitting streak. He also won his first Gold Glove. A Scott Boras client, Bradley isn’t eligible for free agency until 2020. 
 
Friday at 1 p.m. was the deadline to reach deals to avoid arbitration. 

Other arbitration-eligible Red Sox are infielders Xander Bogaerts and Brock Holt, left-handers Drew Pomeranz and Fernando Abad, right-handers Joe Kelly, Robbie Ross and Tyler Thornburg and catcher Sandy Leon.