Looking for work: One-time superstar right-handed hitter; self-centered and self-absorbed; oblivious to his surroundings in good times, a drain on team unity when angry or upset. Comes with marketable dreadlocks (see Los Angeles, 2009 and '10 for details) and a ready smile. If looking for references, please do NOT call Terry Francona, or Theo Epstein, or anyone associated with the 1995-2000 Indians, or anyone associated with the 2009-10 Dodgers, or . . .
That's right. Manny's on the market. Again.
At the GM meetings in Orlando, agent Barry Praver is trying to drum up interest in Manny Ramirez, now 41 and nearly three years removed from his last major-league action. He abruptly retired after playing five games with the Rays in 2011, rather than serve a 100-game suspension for violating MLB's drug policy for a second time. The suspension was reduced to 50 games on appeal and he served it in 2012 when he attempted a comeback with the A's. That comeback failed, as did one with the Rangers in 2013. But he and Praver apparently are hoping that the third time's the charm.
"[Ramirez is] interested in continuing his career, whether it be with a major-league organization or in Japan," Praver said. "He's serious. He's got a tremendous love of the game. He loves playing."
Well, that's nice. But the Manny Being Manny baggage was heavy enough when he was the greatest hitter in baseball (it led the Red Sox to dump him in 2008 when he was still among the game's elite); now that he's an over-the-hill wannabe, you'd have to be pretty desperate to take the chance. Especially since he flunked tests with two teams (the '12 A's and '13 Rangers) in need of right-handed power.
Still. there might be someone out there. Manny just better hope they don't call Tito. Or Theo. Or . . .