After some erroneous reports Tuesday night, it would appear that Manny Ramirez has finally signed where everyone knew he would eventually do so. The Dodgers and the dread-locked power-hitter have finally come to terms on a two-year, $45 million contract.
The only roadblock in the way is a physical. Assuming Manny can pass it, and I don't see how he wouldn't have been keeping himself in shape, he'll be in Spring Training with his Dodgers teammates Thursday morning.
The 36 year-old slugger absolutely shredded National League pitching last season once he was traded to La-la land. In only 53 games for the Dodgers, Manny terrorized opponents for a .396 average, .1.232 OPS, 17 home runs, and 53 RBI. He continued to rake in the playoffs, as he carried the Dodgers to the NLCS for the first time since 1988.
The Dodgers are likely breathing a sigh of relief. Without Ramirez in the middle of the lineup, it would have looked quite power-deficient. Now players like Russell Martin, Matt Kemp, James Loney, and Andre Ethier become the offensive role players they should be, while Manny is the centerpiece.
This signing puts the finishing touches on the Dodgers' roster, one that now becomes the favorite to win the NL West.