The newest member of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Hanley Ramriez made his debut for the team last night, batting fifth and playing third base against the St. Louis Cardinals, got on base in three of his five plate appearances. In his first at bat as a member of the Dodgers, Ramirez hit a triple to center field and then scored the first run of the game. He added an RBI single in the sixth inning, playing a part in both of the runs scored by Los Angeles in their 3-2 extra innings defeat to the Cardinals
With Dee Gordon injured, the Dodgers are expected to ease Ramirez back into the shortstop position where he had played every single minute of his defensive career in the Majors prior to the Miami Marlins signing Jose Reyes this past off season, at which point he was moved to third base. He’s never been an excellent fielder at either position, and will most likely end up playing in left field before his career is over. However, what he provides with his bat offers the Dodgers an immediate upgrade at almost any position they want to play him.
As Jack Moore of FanGraphs points out at the beginning of his summary of the Ramirez trade:
Dodgers shortstops in 2012: .229/.283/.317, .272 wOBA, 70 wRC+. 20th in baseball.
Dodgers third basemen in 2012: .248/.321/.355, .296 wOBA, 85 wRC+. 21st in baseball.
And so, it’s very likely that the best player in Marlins history will make an impact on Los Angeles and their pursuit of postseason baseball. There’s a little bit of humour though, as he leaves Miami, a place that by the end of his tenure had grown cold to him and therefore likely a frustrating to play. This is the last photograph available through the Getty Images service of Ramirez in a Marlins uniform.
Foreshadow much? It’s a stark contrast to this, his first photo in a Marlins uniform:
According to Michael Jong of FishStripes:
A lot has been made of the Miami Marlins trading Hanley Ramirez to the Los Angeles Dodgers for prospects and what it means for the Marlins’ future. A lot has also been made about Ramirez in his final days as a Marlin, with increasing trade rumors swirling amid another silly action in a career filled [with] perceived bad behavior. Combine the rumors, the behavior of the past, and his current poor performance, and you can understand why there was a strong contingent of Marlins fans ready to part with Ramirez as early as last season. Those same Marlins fans have been proclaiming happiness today in the wake of the trade, saying “good riddance” to a player they have grown to dislike.
But those of us who are fans of the Marlins’ history as well as its current state have to look back and appreciate Hanley Ramirez for what he has done on the Marlins. It may seem like a while ago, but it was not so long ago that Hanley Ramirez was one of the five best players in baseball and a good bet to challenge for multiple MVP trophies. Have we already forgotten the historical significance of Ramirez as a Marlin? Even with his last two seasons essentially being washes, Ramirez was a truly amazing player over the course of his Marlins career, and it is worth reflecting on how good he was for the Fish.
So, remember this picture Dodgers fans, and hope that the final one is equally as happy.
And The Rest
Will injuries keep Alex Rodriguez from matching and surpassing the Barry Bonds home run record? [HardBall Talk]
The Cincinnati Reds turned down a deal for Philadelphia Phillies center fielder Shane Victorino. [Cincinnati.com]
Kirk Gibson’s bobblehead is rather excited. [Deadspin]
Are we past the Michael Young breaking point, yet? [Baseball Time In Arlington]
The conundrum of pitching roles. Relievers gonna relieve. [Baseball Prospectus]
Carlos Gomez of the Milwaukee Brewers might just have the best foul ball trot in all of baseball. [MLB.com]
San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy wants Brandon Belt to wear big boy pants. [Call To The Pen]
Toronto Blue Jays catcher J.P. Arencibia is out six weeks with a broken hand. [DJF]
Rejoice Pittsburgh Pirates fans, for Starling Marte is free. [Raise The Jolly Roger]
Beating the dead horse of the Philadelphia Phillies payroll. [Baseball Nation]
Michael Almanzar had quite the streak going. [MiLB.com]
The small town police officer who used a racial slur against Carl Crawford should lose his job. [Over The Monster]
We go through all the big trades and contract extensions on the latest edition of the Getting Blanked Show, talking about Hanley, Hamels, Wandy, and even some A-Rod injury news. [Getting Blanked]