Manny Ramirez tested positive for a performance-enhancing drug in Spring Training and was likely facing a 100-game suspension. Instead, the 38-year old appears done for 2011 and possibly, his career.
Having already served a 50-game suspension as a member of the L.A. Dodgers when he tested positive for a banned substance, perhaps Ramirez was growing frustrated by the league cracking down on steroid use.
From 1998 to 2006, Ramirez had at least 33 home runs, 100 runs batted in and a batting average of at least .292 each season. Since then, he has been on four different teams and experienced a significant drop in production. Still, he has managed to maintain a serviceable batting average and produced 40 RBI's in just 66 games with the Dodgers last year.
This is tough news for the Tampa Devil Rays organization. No team was hit harder by free agency in the offseason than the Rays, losing Carl Crawford, Carlos Pena and Matt Garza, to name a few. Their signing of Ramirez represented a glimmer of playoff hope in arguably the toughest division in North American professional sports.
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