Former Dodgers slugger Manny Ramirez has signed a minor-league deal worth $500,000 with the Oakland A's and will report to spring training later this week in hopes of winning a job, ESPN says. That's a far cry from 2009, when the Dodgers signed him to a $45 million, two-year deal — only to see him draw a 50-game suspension for banned substances a month into the season. The relationship and Manny's career just soured from there. In August 2010, the Dodgers gladly pushed him onto the Chicago White Sox. At the start of last season, with Manny playing designated hitter for the Tampa Bay Rays, he abruptly retired rather than face a longer suspension for a second positive test for banned substances in his system. Then in September he was arrested on suspicion of domestic abuse.
But over this winter he became remorseful about his career being over, and said he would try to come back (though he also admitted that, at 39, he was also recrafting his no-longer-golden swing.) Nobody but the non-contender A's apparently wanted Ramirez, and if he makes the team he will have to serve a 50-game suspension. He would be eligible to play on May 30 — his 40th birthday.
In the Dodgers' bankruptcy case, guess who is the team's biggest creditor. Manny!
Mannymania in 2009:
Meanwhile: Albert Pujols has already reported to the Angels' spring training camp in Arizona.
LA Observed photo: Judy Graeme
Manny takes the field in spring training 2009: