Manny Ramirez eyes Taiwan

Updated: February 26, 2013, 1:43 PM ET
By Enrique Rojas | ESPNdeportes.com

ORLANDO, Fla. -- If Manny Ramirez doesn't have a job in Major League Baseball by March 7, he will play for a team in Taiwan, Ramirez told ESPNdeportes.com.

Ramirez said that the EDA Rhinos of the China Professional Baseball League established March 7 as the deadline for a final decision. The Rhinos, formerly known as the Sinon Bulls, will play their first regular-season game on March 17.

"I will play in Taiwan if I cannot get work in the U.S. by that deadline," Ramirez said. "It will be a new experience, to experience another culture while I keep doing what I love and what I've done in all my life, playing baseball."

Ramirez didn't provide financial details of his agreement with EDA, but a good foreign player usually earns about $12,000 per month in Taiwan.

Three weeks ago, Ramirez told ESPNDeportes.com that he would prefer to wait for a call from an MLB team before looking for a job in another part of the world. But the phone never rang.

"My agents called almost every team in the AL with apparent needs -- a veteran to use as a designated hitter and [with] occasional pop, but nobody was interested," Ramirez said.

To increase his chances of landing an MLB job, the 12-time All-Star played winter ball in the Dominican Republic for the first time in 18 years. He hit .298 with eight home runs, 27 RBIs and 21 runs in 181 at-bats with Aguilas Cibaenas.

"I have no control over that situation. I thought that showing in the field what I can still do will facilitate my comeback, but that has not happened," Ramirez said. "But I'll settle for playing in Taiwan or elsewhere in the summer and winter ball in my country."

Ramirez, 40, batted .312 with 555 homers and 1.831 RBIs in 19 MLB seasons before retiring from baseball in April 2011 after committing a second violation of MLB's drug policy.

Last year he signed a minor league contract with the Oakland A's and served a 50-game penalty in Triple-A, but he became a free agent after Oakland didn't call him up to the majors midseason.

Enrique Rojas is a reporter and columnist for ESPNdeportes.com and ESPN.com.

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