Los Angeles Dodgers Acquire All-Star Infielder Hanley Ramirez from Marlins

July 25, 2012

In an aggressive move designed to put the Azul back into the World Series picture, the Los Angeles Dodgers acquired three-time All-Star infielder Hanley Ramirez and left-handed reliever Randy Choate from the Miami Marlins in exchange for right-handed pitcher Nathan Eovaldi and Single-A Rancho Cucamonga right-hander Scott McGough.

“The addition of a hitter the caliber of Hanley Ramirez improves our lineup from top to bottom, inserting a proven run producer to go along with Matt and Andre,” said Dodger General Manager Ned Colletti. “We’re excited for Hanley to begin a new chapter in Los Angeles.”

In Ramirez, LA has added a sorely-needed infield power bat, as underachieving third basemen Juan Uribe has been hovering around the Mendoza line throughout the season. Ramirez also will provide some versatility defensively, as he could see action at third or at shortstop while Dee Gordon is out with a thumb injury.  

After playing exclusively at shortstop through the first seven seasons of his career, Ramirez transitioned to third base this season and was hitting a mediocre .246 through 93 games.  However, Ramirez's 14 home runs and 48 RBI indicate that he still has some pop left in his bat.

More importantly, this deal marks another departure from the penny-pinching ways of the McCourt era, as Ramirez is owed $38 million over the duration of his contract.

Ramirez owns a .300 career batting average with 148 home runs and 482 RBI in 945 games over eight Major League seasons with the Red Sox (2005) and Marlins (2006-12). The 28-year-old started three consecutive All-Star Games at shortstop for the National League from 2008-10 and took home back-to-back Louisville Silver Slugger Awards at the position in 2008 and 2009, when he won the NL’s batting title with a .342 average.

The 6-foot-3, 225-pounder was named the National League Rookie of the Year in 2006 with Florida and has finished in the Top 10 of the NL’s MVP voting twice in his career, including a second place finish in 2009.

Choate has a 2.49 ERA in 44 relief appearances with the Marlins in his 12th Major League season. The 36-year-old has limited opposing hitters to a .178 batting average this season, including a .150 mark by left-handed hitters. Choate has allowed just three extra-base hits while striking out 27 in 25.1 innings this season.

“Randy Choate is a veteran pitcher that provides depth to our bullpen and gives Don Mattingly another left-handed relief option,” said Colletti.

Eovaldi, 22, was 2-8 with a 3.96 ERA in two Major League seasons, including a 1-6 mark with a 4.15 ERA in 10 starts with the Dodgers this season. McGough, 22, was the club’s fifth-round selection from the 2011 First-Year Player Draft out of the University of Oregon and was 3-5 with a 3.99 ERA and five saves in 35 relief appearances for Single-A Rancho Cucamonga in his second professional season.

By Staff of The Daily Sports Herald and news services

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