Manny Ramirez has signed a minor league contract with the Oakland Athletics.
Ramirez abruptly retired early in the 2011 season during a brief stint with the Tampa Bay Rays after testing positive for performance enhancing substances for a second time.
In January, Ramirez applied for and was granted reinstatement by MLB. Should he make the team, Ramirez will have to serve another 50 game suspension for his second violation. A third violation would result in a lifetime ban from MLB.
Despite his mercurial nature, this is a low risk signing for Oakland as they are only paying him $500,000. As he approaches 40, I don’t expect he’ll do much for the Athletics. But if he is productive, it’ll be a bargain.