Could Hanley Ramirez be on the Twins' radar?

Red Sox 2B Pedroia to make season debut

The Astros are the defending World Series Champs and I could see Hanley joining them, which could come back to hurt the Red Sox. The Red Sox focused on one thing - contact hitting - and dismissed all the potential negatives.

When Herb Brooks was crafting the 1980 Olympic hockey team, he left a number of the most skilled players off his roster.

The team now has seven days to trade or release Ramirez, who would be paid $15 million if not traded or claimed by another club. You need more than that from a DH or first baseman.

Hanley Ramirez won't torment the Yankees anymore - at least not as a member of the rival Red Sox.

"This roster we have today is going to help us in the long run", Cora said.

Ramirez signed a four-year, $88 million contract with the Red Sox in 2014. He was undoubtedly the Red Sox best hitter in the series despite a shoulder that needed surgery.

Red Sox president Dave Dombrowski said Ramirez's vesting option did not factor into the Red Sox's decision. By designating Ramirez for assignment, the Red Sox clear the way for Pedroia to make his 2018 debut.

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Mitch Moreland and Blake Swihart will be the direct beneficiaries on the field, as Moreland hopes to build on his hot start and Swihart looks to earn at least semi-regular playing time.

And neither is Cherington, whose two worst and most expensive decisions - Ramirez and Sandoval, the "Gold Bust Twins", as our paper pegged them - are if not off the books at least out of the clubhouse.

Instead of designating him for assignment and giving the Sox little leverage in their last-ditch efforts to trade Swihart, they are giving up on their DH and turning to a 26-year-old who has made just four starts in 50 games this season. It's tough. I haven't spoken with him yet.

The reasoning, in part, was both players were good contact hitters. Obviously, everyone knows my relationship with him. The deal contains a $22 million option that would become guaranteed if he has 1,050 plate appearances in 2017-18 combined and passed a physical at the end of the season. I care about him and his family.

When Ramirez's struggles this month continued, Cora said the team - and Ramirez - were better served with him gone. 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.

"I'm very, very excited".

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