Manny Ramirez signs deal in Australia

August 29th, 2020

"Manny being Manny." "Mannywood." The cut-off of Johnny Damon's throw. The trips inside the Green Monster during a game at Fenway Park.

Lest you thought the Manny Ramirez saga was at an end after he made his latest comeback attempt with Japan's Kochi Fighting Dogs of the independent Shikoku Island League three years ago, the 12-time MLB All-Star and 2004 World Series Most Valuable Player is attempting another return to the diamond at age 48 in the Australian Baseball League.

MLB Network insider Jon Heyman reported Friday that Ramirez has signed a one-year deal with the Sydney Blue Sox to be a player-coach, with a club option for a second season.

Ramirez played 19 Major League seasons for the Indians, Red Sox, Dodgers, White Sox and Rays. He hit 555 home runs and posted a .996 career OPS, helping Boston to World Series championships in 2004 and '07. Overall, he holds the all-time postseason record with 29 home runs in 111 playoff games.

The Red Sox traded Ramirez to the Dodgers in the middle of the 2008 season, and he helped Los Angeles reach the postseason by hitting .396 and belting 17 homers in 53 games down the stretch. The following year, he was suspended 50 games for violating MLB's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program.

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Ramirez was claimed off waivers by the White Sox in 2010, and he signed as a free agent with the Rays in '11, the last year in which he appeared in an MLB game. He retired after hitting .059 in five games with Tampa Bay.

Ramirez attempted to return to the Majors three times from 2012-14, signing Minor League contracts with the A's, Rangers and Cubs, though he never appeared in a Major League game for those clubs. He continued his career in the Dominican Winter League and Chinese Professional Baseball League through '15, with a brief player-coach stint for the Pacific Coast League's Iowa Cubs in '14, then later joined the Fighting Dogs in '17.