The Dodgers saw both sides of Hanley Ramirez after they acquired him in 2012. After heading into spring training with hopes of becoming the Ramirez of old, he got derailed by a torn ligament in his right thumb that will sideline him for at least the first six weeks of the season.
But once he returns, there is hope that Ramirez can again be the dynamic player he was with the Marlins from 2007-2010.
"Here's my belief with Hanley Ramirez: On any given day he's out there, he's a guy with a really good chance to be the best player on the field," manager Don Mattingly said in February.
Ramirez made three All-Star teams and hit .319/.394/.532, a 141 OPS+ for Florida from 2007-2010, and won a batting title in 2009. But after hitting just .245/.327/.404 in 2011-2012, the Marlins shipped him to the Dodgers last July 25.
Ramirez tripled in his first at-bat as a Dodger and was pretty much everything the Dodgers asked for right out of the gate. He hit .273/.338/.511 with eight home runs in 35 games through the end of August. But in September Ramirez hit just .268/.305/.375 with two home runs, including none after Sep. 3.
On the season Ramirez hit .257 with 24 home runs and 92 RBI.
"I talked to him last year. I know how good this guy is, and hitting .250 just isn't good enough for Hanley Ramirez," Mattingly said. "His swing seemed really big last year. He hit 24 home runs last year so he wasn't terrible, but we're just asking for more. If he'll take his hits, which is what he's doing right now, he's going to drive in more runs and hit more homers. He's going to be shorter all around, he's going to be more productive than hitting .250 and driving in 90."
Will the Dodgers get a more productive Ramirez in 2013? We'll see in about seven weeks.
Ramirez has five seasons of 20 or more home runs and 20 or more stolen bases, tied for the 10th most 20/20 seasons in major league history, one behind Hank Aaron, Willie Mays, Alex Rodriguez, and Raul Mondesi.
Ramirez has two years remaining on his contract, and will make $15.5 million in 2013.
|2013 Projections - Age 29 Season|
The thumb injury knocked some wind out of his sails, but I'm still high on Ramirez this season. I'll guess .291/.374/.469, with a first game back of May 24.
What is your guess for Ramirez? Be sure to guess BA/OBP/SLG, first game back off the disabled list, and any other thing you wish to guess.