In what sounds a lot like a tryout, the Texas Rangers have signed globe-wandering slugger Manny Ramirez to a minor-league contract and assigned him to Triple-A.
Rangers GM Jon Daniels told the Dallas Morning News:
"It’s a no-risk flyer in a lot of ways. Our history, we like giving guys second chances. We know on and off the field the good and bad of Manny’s career, but we’re inclined to give him an opportunity here ... If he’s productive and we feel he’d fit our culture here, we’ll give him an opportunity. If either of those ends don’t pan out, no harm, no foul.”
Manny was a star in 49 games in Taiwan, hitting .352 with eight homers and 43 RBIs. He not only produced on the field, but entertained those of us back home watching via YouTube. Playing again in MLB, however, is much different than Taiwan, from which Triple-A is a step up. Manny's last big-league attempt didn't go as he hoped. He played Triple-A ball for the Oakland Athletics in 2012 and hit .302 in 17 games, but didn't impress the A's enough to get a call-up, so he asked to be released.
Manny's camp sounds hopeful:
"This whole thing with Manny in Taiwan was a phenomenon. He invigorated the league. Attendance went through the roof. It was a very positive experience for both sides," Ramirez's agent, Barry Praver, said, according to Fox Sports. "Manny was so invigorated by his play there that he wants to return to the majors."
Just the prospect of Manny going to Texas — either Round Rock or getting called up to Arlington — sounds like gold for those of who enjoy the spectacle of Manny Being Manny — or as it shall now be known, Manny Being Manny, y'all.
We hope that Manny begins wearing cowboy hats and cowboy boots, starts a country band with A.J Pierzynski and Berkman called "The Three Amigos" and adopts "Clear Eyes, Full Hearts, Can't Lose" as his personal mantra.