Three-time All-Star Hanley Ramirez underwent right shoulder surgery last week after “years of discomfort,” tweets MLB Network’s Jon Heyman. Ramirez has previously had surgery on his left (non-throwing) shoulder as well.
Ramirez, 36 in December, was the Indians’ Opening Day designated hitter in 2019, but his stay with the organization was brief. Signed to a minor league contract this past offseason, Ramirez was cut loose after hitting just .187/.298/.327 with a pair of homers and 17 strikeouts in 57 plate appearances with Cleveland. His 2018 season also ended with a release, as the Red Sox cut him loose in the final season of his four-year, $88MM deal after just 44 games (and a .254/.313/.395 batting line).
Over the winter, Ramirez revealed that he had offers to play with other teams following his release from the Red Sox, but he instead chose to “get [his] body healthy and come back next year.” That certainly lends credence to the notion that Ramirez’s shoulder troubles have been ongoing for quite some time, but it doesn’t appear that the prolonged period of rest did the trick as he’d hoped.
Another minor league pact will almost certainly be required for Ramirez as he embarks on another comeback bid. While he was one of the game’s most feared hitters during his prime, his peak years are well behind him. At this point, he’s been a below-average hitter in four of the past five seasons (2019 included), with the lone exception being a 2016 campaign that produced a .286/.361/.505 batting line and 30 home runs.