A’s agree to terms with OF Manny Ramirez on Minor League contract

OAKLAND, Calif. – The Oakland A’s agreed to terms with outfielder Manny Ramirez on a minor league contract for the 2012 season, the club announced today.  Ramirez will report to spring training as a non-roster invitee by the end of this week.
Ramirez is a .312 career hitter with 555 home runs and 1,831 RBI in 2,302 games over 19 seasons with Cleveland (1993-2000), Boston (2001-08), the Los Angeles Dodgers (2008-10), the Chicago White Sox (2010) and Tampa Bay (2011).  He ranks 14th in Major League history in home runs, 17th in RBI, 25th in doubles (547), 36th in walks (1329), 57th in runs (1544) and tied for 84th in hits (2574).  A 12-time All-Star, Ramirez also has 21 career grand slams, which is third most behind Lou Gehrig (23) and Alex Rodriguez (22).

Ramirez has won nine Silver Slugger Awards and has finished in the top six in MVP voting seven times in his career.  He led the American League with 165 RBI in 1999 with Cleveland and won a batting championship and home run crown with Boston, hitting .349 in 2002 and slugging 43 home runs in 2004.  The 39-year-old veteran hit a career-high 45 home runs in 1998 and 2005 and has 12 seasons with 30 or more home runs.  He has driven in at least 100 runs 12 times and batted .300 or better 11 times.  Ramirez has reached postseason play 11 times in his career and won World Series Championships with Boston in 2004 and 2007.

Ramirez began the 2011 season with Tampa Bay and went 1-for-17 (.059) with one RBI in five games before retiring April 8.  Prior to playing for Oakland, he will first serve a 50-game suspension for violating Major League Baseball’s drug policy.