Manny Ramirez is ready to return to baseball despite being 47 years old. The former Boston Red Sox star recently spoke to the Taiwan Times, admitting he's looking to play in the Chinese Professional Baseball League. Ramirez played in the CPBL in 2013, the last time he played baseball professionally.
"My goal for 2020, is to find a roster spot in the CPBL," Ramirez said to the Taiwan Times. "I have been itching to get back in the batter’s box and be able to compete again. I also miss being around teammates and team dinners post-game. I know if I was given the opportunity to come in an organization as a player-coach, it would do great things for the organization and the league. When I arrived in 2013, attendances nearly quadrupled overnight. That means, there is love for the game and the fans will come but the owners must bring what the fans want."
Ramirez played in 49 games with the EDL Rhinos of the CPBL in 2013 before returning to the United States. He was able to put up solid numbers, recording a batting average of .352 with eight home runs and 43 RBIs. The CPBL started the season on April 11, but there are no spectators due to the coronavirus pandemic.
"My fondest memory of Taiwan happens to be my first home run in a Rhinos uniform," Ramirez said. "After I got that chip off my back, I was able to slide into a comfortable rhythm. The baseball fans of Taiwan are incredibly respectful and loyal—this being one of the many reasons of wanting to come back and leave my mark, once more. Also, the food and their tea were delicious, I remember trying to figure out how to bring it back, days before my departure. I also remember visiting a local hospital and meeting a few children, who were ill."
Ramirez started his MLB career in 1993 as a member of the Cleveland Indians. He joined the Red Sox in 2001 and helped the team win two World Series titles (2004, 2007). Ramirez was the World Series MVP in 2004 and was the American League home run leader the same year. In his MLB career, Ramirez batted .312 with 2,574 hits, 555 home runs, and 1,831 RBIs.