Manny Ramirez confirmed — as much as he is capable of — what every interested party on Earth and neighboring celestial bodies already surmised: 2010 will be his last season as a Dodger. From Tony Jackson of ESPNLosAngeles.com:
... He said he hasn't been told by club officials that the Dodgers aren't interested in re-signing him, but he added that it probably isn't realistic to expect them to do so.
"I'm just speculating but I'm not 23 anymore," Ramirez said.
Ramirez said he would wait until after the season to determine if he wants to play in the major leagues for what would be a 19th year. His options might be limited to the American League, which uses the designated hitter, because of his defensive limitations in left field.
"The game is still fun, but I think I have to wait until the season ends and see where my family is at before I make a choice," Ramirez said. "I will just wait and see how my body reacts."
After working out for most of the winter near his South Florida home, Ramirez said his legs feel fine entering spring training.
"From the waist down, I feel 15," he said. "From the neck up, I feel 43. I feel good." ...
This is creating a lot of headlines from Los Angeles to Boston, but it doesn't really change anything. There's still exactly the same doubt about his physical condition there already was. Mentally, there's certainly a chance he might mail in the season, or try to orchestrate a midseason trade to an American League team with an opening at designated hitter — a move the Dodgers might be quite happy to accommodate, depending on the circumstances. But the fact that Ramirez voiced aloud what everyone was suspecting is hardly a turning point.
The main thing is that we're still looking at a 38-year-old slugger with idiosyncrasies but also something left to prove. It was going to be an interesting ride before today, and it figures to stay that way.
Ramirez's OPS by month in his final season in Boston: April 1.029, May .714, June .930, July 1.060.
Dylan Hernandez of the Times wrote that Ramirez "refused to talk in detail about problems at the plate last season, but he acknowledged that (the Dodgers) made him change his off-season training regimen."
Joe Torre said that he plans to give Ramirez two or three days off every two weeks. If you translate that as a game off per week, on average (factoring in off days), Ramirez would be on tap to play about 140 games if he doesn't go on the disabled list.
Previously on Dodger Thoughts: "Tracing the Citizen Rebellion in Mannywood."