Manny Ramirez is scheduled to begin a 10-game minor league stint with Triple-A Sacramento on Saturday in Albuquerque, N.M. The A’s announced his schedule Tuesday, and the River Cats have already been busy planning for his much-anticipated arrival.
Oakland A’s general manager Billy Beane has decided that rather than start Ramirez in Class A Stockton, he wanted to get Ramirez prepared against the best competition possible before his return to the major leagues.
At one time Ramirez was one of baseball’s most feared hitters. The 12 time All-Star has been serving a 50 game suspension for a second positive drug test. Ramirez retired last year from the Tampa Bay Rays rather than serve a 100 game suspension for his second failed test.
The suspension was reduced to 50 games because he sat out nearly all of last season. Ramirez will be entering his 20th major league season and is a career .312 hitter with 1,831 RBIs and 555 home runs.
The A’s signed Ramirez to a one-year minor league deal on February 20. The deal is reportedly worth $500,000 if he is eventually added to the A’s major-league roster.
Despite the multiple failed drug tests, Ramirez remains wildly popular with baseball fans. The buzz around Sacramento has already begun, and the team has begun selling ticket packages in honor of his return. The limited edition “Manmy Pack” will include a variety of perks and special offers