Manny Ramirez appears to be working his way toward returning to the Major Leagues on May 30 when his suspension for violating baseball's performance-enhancing drug policy is up. That date also happens to be his 40th birthday.
The real question is whether or not those jokey "over the hill" cards are really a joke in Manny's case.
Forget for a second the fact that Ramirez blatantly quit on his teammates and just walked away from the Tampa Bay Rays with neary a second thought when his suspension initially came down last year. Or the fact it was at least the third team (the Red Sox and Dodgers being the other two) he quit on.
The real question is this — is he still capable of the "Manny being Manny" moniker?
The aswer, at least at the plate, is likely no.
Manny certainly was not impressive in his short time in a Rays uniform, hitting .059 with one RBI in five games. Then look back at his time with the White Sox in 2010; he hit .269 with a lone home run and 2 RBI in 24 games. His numbers weren't even all that impressive with the Dodgers prior to the trade, hitting just 8 homers and notching 40 RBI in 66 games.
In reality, Manny really hasn't been Manny since his first steroid suspension back in 2009. But I guarantee there will be someone in your league who will convince themselves Ramirez still has something left (heck, apparently the A's do since they reportedly plan on hitting him in the middle of their lineup).
The more likely scenario, however, is that Manny is truly done. Sure, it won't cost you anything other than a roster slot to take a flier on Manny, but at this point I'm not even sure he's worth that.
Buyer beware — I think you're better off just staying away altogether.
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Last week I said David Robertson owners shouldn't panic. Guess I spoke too soon; Robertson was placed on the 15-day DL this week with an oblique strain.
Rafael Soriano will now close out games for the Yankees and he's converted his last two save opportunities. So far, so good — but I still think long-term Robertson will be the guy for the Bombers.
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In other closer news, Casey Janssen has taken over temporary closing duties for the Blue Jays until Sergio Santos is ready to come off the DL. Janssen has converted all three of his save opportunites since getting the job and is only owned in 32 percent of Yahoo! leagues if you're in the market for cheap saves, even if they're temporary.
And it appears as those Addison Reed may be the man you want out of the White Sox bullpen after Chris Sale was shifted back into the rotation. Reed is a perfect 4 for 4 in save opportunities this season is only owned in 39 percent of Yahoo! leagues. There was talk in spring training that Reed could get the job before the surprise ascension of Hector Santiago, so Reed may be given a decent chance to earn the job full-time. His 12.7 strikeout per 9 rate doesn't hurt, either.
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Yesterday saw quite a few rumors about a possible Roy Oswalt return to the Majors, including some which suggested Oswalt could be with a team within in a month. It's been kind of a roller coaster ride to begin with regarding Oswalt (remember when he was supposedly about to sign with the Cardinals during the offseason?), but it certainly warrants keeping an eye on.
Even if a return isn't imminent, it's still likely at some point this summer and, if healthy, Oswalt could be a valuable addition to a roster.