Thursday, May 31, 2018

Sox Have Officially Requested Unconditional 'Release Waivers' On Hanley

(Getty Images)
After designating him for assignment late last week, the Red Sox (as of last night) have asked for unconditional release waivers on their former 1B/DH Hanley Ramirez. While they have had the last week to try to work out a trade for Hanley, few teams wanted to risk next year's $22 million vesting option that would be triggered by just 302 more 2018 plate appearances under the existing contract. With an unconditional release from that contract (after clearing waivers), teams could sign Ramirez as a free agent starting Friday. The burdensome terms of the 2019 vesting option would disappear in this scenario. Hanley would still be owed the balance of the 2018 contract—which a combination of the Red Sox and any new team would be responsible for. Confused yet? Anyway, it seems extremely likely that some contending team in need of a seasoned veteran at 1B/DH will snatch up Hanley sometime during this upcoming weekend. Our guesses are: the Angels (Luis Valbuena is awful); the Twins (Joe Mauer has been injured and has no power any more); or the Rockies (Ian Desmond has been at The Mendoza Line almost all year). Of course, the nightmare scenario is Hanley going to The Evil Ones (if they give up on a Greg Bird/Neil Walker/Tyler Austin mix). Yikes!