Red Sox letting Ramirez go

Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia speaks to teammates in the dugout before an interleague baseball game against the Atlanta Braves at Fenway Park Friday

Sentinel and Enterprise staff photos can be ordered by visiting our SmugMug site. To make room on the 25-man roster, the Red Sox designated first baseman/designated hitter Hanley Ramirez for assignment. Somehow, though, Pedroia's return isn't the biggest Red Sox story of the day - or even the biggest part of this particular story. Clearly, the Red Sox figured they'd be better off rolling with Mitch Moreland at the cold corner rather than giving the 34-year-old Ramirez a chance to get right. In his four seasons with the Red Sox, he provided above-average offense in only 2016. Renteria already has said Sanchez could play some outfield, though he's yet to give him a shot. The move also protected Blake Swihart, whose agent made a formal request for his client to be traded due to a lack of playing time, from being designated for assignment or traded. "(Cora) called me, I remember it was about 11:30 in the morning. "He can move around and the real Eduardo Nunez will come out". "He thinks our club is a closely meshed one and with the personnel and leadership that we have, we'll be able to handle that part of it".

Dombrowski acknowledged that the outcome of that decision - putting Ramirez on the bench - posed more of a risk than letting him go. To get there, he needed only 497 more plate appearances.

That contract is most likely one of the things that led to his DFA, though, since it includes a costly vesting option for a fifth year.

"That had nothing to do with it", he said. "We're in a situation where basically we're trying to do everything we possibly can to win, so that (Ramirez's 2019 salary) would not be an obstacle in that regard".

And there you have it.

Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia gestures in the dugout before an interaleague baseball game against the Atlanta Braves at Fenway Park Friday
Red Sox letting Ramirez go

Ramirez's time in Boston has largely been a disappointment due to injuries and erratic play. Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski had reportedly sought a high price for him in a trade.

But if the Sox just want to provide a little entertainment value to this lost season, and if Davidson's back issue is not a recurring theme, they can play Davidson at third and use Ramirez at DH.

"He likes to move around", Cora said.

"He's going to put a first base glove on, which he has done before. If he hit a lot, you overcome that". Add in the salaries of Pablo Sandoval ($18 million), who was released a year ago, and Rusney Castillo ($11 million), who was taken off the roster and is playing in Triple-A Pawtucket, and the Red Sox are paying $44 million for players not playing in Boston. First and foremost, Ramirez hadn't been doing badly this season.

Moreland's here, so is Swihart.

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