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Report: Rays Interested in Manny Ramirez?

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BOSTON - SEPTEMBER 05:  Manny Ramirez #99 of the Chicago White Sox pinch hits in the eighth inning against the Boston Red Sox on September 5 2010 at Fenway Park in Boston Massachusetts.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
BOSTON - SEPTEMBER 05: Manny Ramirez #99 of the Chicago White Sox pinch hits in the eighth inning against the Boston Red Sox on September 5 2010 at Fenway Park in Boston Massachusetts. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
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This from Enrique Rojas (translated from Spanish):

In the previous days, 2 people in Manny's inner circle have mentioned that Rays have shown some interest in him. This could be completely unfounded, but it is an interesting possibility    

We've supported Manny coming to the Rays for a long time. Here's what Erik had to say on Manny back in November:

Ideally the Rays would like a full time DH, not a platoon situation, and I'd imagine a player with a lifetime .411 OBP and .418 wOBA would be at the top of their list. It's an odd thing to hear super-agent Scott Boras actually admit that he probably won't get his client a large contract, which makes it much more likely that Ramirez ends up in a price range the Rays like. If Ramirez ends up getting an incentive laden, one year contract, while the Rays would prefer to have someone younger fill their line-up hole, Friedman has said he's open to signing the right player to a one-year contract.

Manny is coming off a down year, and there are concerns that his power has declined. Even if that's true, though, Manny still likely has enough pop to perform better than the Rays' pitiful DH production from last season. Oh, and he's played in the AL East before, so that can squash any concerns about him flopping like Pat Burrell.

The downside to signing Manny to an incentive-laden, one-year contract is very low, while the upside is huge. Even last year, a year that many considered a poor year for him, Manny produced over 1.5 wins in only 90 games. Take him out of the field and toss him at DH every day, and even a worst-case scenario makes him look like a 2 WAR player. That's bundles more than the Rays got last season, and it'd definitely improve the Rays' chances of making the postseason.

Manny would be a great addition to the middle of the Rays' line-up, and his price tag looks quite low. You can criticize his personality all you want, but who's to say how he'd fit in with the Rays' clubhouse? Heck, considering Maddon's eccentric personality, Manny might fit right in.