Long-time MLB star Manny Ramirez is well past his prime, but he may yet have another act. He tells Mark Buckton of the Taiwan Times that he’s hoping to appear again in the Chinese Professional Baseball League.
“My goal for 2020, is to find a roster spot in the CPBL,” Ramirez says. “I have been itching to get back in the batter’s box and be able to compete again.”
The CPBL is, of course, the only place in the world to catch a ballgame at the moment. Ramirez, who turns 48 at the end of May, previously starred briefly in Taiwan’s five-team league back in 2013.
The idea this time around, per Ramirez, is to function “as a player-coach.” That’s the same angle he took when he appeared at Triple-A with the Cubs in 2014. Ramirez also pursued an opportunity in Japan in 2017, but nothing came of it.
Why Taiwan? Ramirez says he has also considered the indy ball circuit — which isn’t active right now and may not be in 2020 — but prefers to cross the Pacific. “I have had a few offers for teams in the Atlantic League, but am more in favor of experiencing Taiwan and their delicious food,” he explains.
Ramirez produced and occasionally puzzled over 19 memorable MLB seasons, the last of which was a very brief 2011 showing. He launched 555 total long balls and compiled a ridiculous lifetime .312/.411/.585 batting line, making him one of the greatest hitters in the history of the game — albeit one who tarnished his career with multiple PED violations.
You’ll want to check out the interview for more on what Ramirez has been up to of late. The ever-interesting and exceptionally talented slugger speaks of helping quietly in the community and focusing on his family and Christian faith.