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Boston’s Dombrowski Finally Chimes In On Shocking Release Of Hanley Ramirez

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Red Sox Nation had to scrape its collective jaw off the floor after the team made a shocking announcement last Friday.  With franchise cornerstone Dustin Pedroia set to come off the DL and make his season debut, the team designated fan favorite DH/1B Hanley Ramirez for assignment.

Fans and media alike believed that the overwhelming favorite to be the odd man out was C/LF Blake Swihart. Boston’s former top prospect has ran into a modicum of injuries since his debut in 2015 and has become nothing close to what the team was hoping for. With the 26-year-old out of options on his contract, it seemed to be a sure thing, especially given that Swihart’s agent requested a trade due to his client’s considerable lack of playing time. But, Red Sox fans should know more than anyone else that nothing is for sure in baseball. On Friday, Boston did indeed announce the designation of a player, but, in a stunning twist, the unlucky sap was Ramirez.

After remaining fairly quiet about it over the holiday weekend, Red Sox PBO Dave Dombrowski broke his silence yesterday in an interview with New England Sports Network’s Tom Carron. According to Dombrowski, manager Alex Cora was the architect of the decision, a puzzling revelation given that Cora named Ramirez Boston’s Opening Day first baseman.

Click here to watch the full clip from NESN.

The move is shock and a half for multiple reasons. Ramirez had been enigmatic in 2018 to that point, hitting .330 in April but just .163, albeit with 29 RBI. May was not good to the team’s once-top prospect, but there appeared to be no reason to panic. Ramirez’ contract is still owned by the Red Sox and the team has until Friday to either release or deal him.

To Hanley’s credit, he handled the situation very well and thanked Boston fans in a classy farewell tweet.

His departure breaks the logjam that the team created when Mitch Moreland was resigned this offseason. Moreland had been very solid off the bench and his hot hitting gradually won Cora over. Speaking both impartially and as a fan of the Sox at the same time, my issue this; Moreland is without question a better defensive first baseman than Hanley, but his offense is very inconsistent and he has never proved himself to be a guy who can carry a team. When healthy, Ramirez is just that. A shoulder injury derailed him last season after a career year in 2016, and while that was certainly frustrating, I’m very shocked that the team decided to just cut its losses out of nowhere.

Blake Swihart, on the other hand, I think is safe to be declared a lost cause at this point. I have nothing against him, but Boston doesn’t need his catching with the platoon of Christian Vazquez and Sandy Leon, and his offense has been nowhere near good enough to suggest he could be moved to a different position. The only reason Boston transitioned him to an outfielder in the first place was a 2016 injury to Brock Holt that kept him out for more than half the year. I don’t see him factoring into the team’s long term plans at all.

As for Hanley, I hope he goes somewhere and has success. The vindictive part of me really hopes that the move will come back and bite Boston on the rear, but I’d like more to see him go and prove his worth elsewhere. As alluded to earlier, the team has yet to say sayonara and it will be interesting to see what it attempts to do to salvage the situation. Even at 34, Ramirez is too good a player to be allowed to walk for free, Boston should at least attempt to deal him.

American League

Red Sox Dustin Pedroia Attempting Return in 2020

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Dustin Pedroia

Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia has reportedly given “every indication” that he intends to play in 2020 says new chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom, according to MassLive.com’s Christopher Smith.

Pedroia, 36, underwent a mid-season knee procedure that had many questioning his career.

“Every indication I’ve gotten is he’s feeling good and intending on playing,” Bloom says of Pedroia. “I know he’s working really hard to make sure he’s in as good of shape as possible,” Bloom said.

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American League

Red Sox Hire Dave Bush As Pitching Coach

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Dave Bush

The Boston Red Sox have found their new pitching coach, as they are naming Dave Bush as their new coach.

Bush had been considered a front runner for the position, and has been in the Red Sox system since 2017.

Bush is also a former player, having pitched for the Toronto Blue Jays, Milwaukee Brewers, and the Texas Rangers over his 9-year career.

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American League

Dave Bush Considered Favorite for Red Sox Pitching Coach Gig

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Chris Sale

The Boston Red Sox may be closing in on their next pitching coach, the successor to Dana LeVangie, with minor league pitching performance coordinator Dave Bush considered to be a front runner to land the job, according to the Boston Globe’s Alex Speier.

The report goes on to say that Bush could be formally named the new pitching coach sometime this week, “within a few days”.

The Red Sox are looking to bounce back after missing the postseason in 2019, and seeing their rotation, including ace Chris Sale, struggle during 2019.

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