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News » Jays downplay Manny chances, want Burnett back 2008-10-22

Jays downplay Manny chances, want Burnett back 2008-10-22

Jays downplay Manny chances, want Burnett back 2008-10-22
Around baseball, people keep wondering: Which teams might be interested in Manny Ramirez as a free agent?

Here's one: The Toronto Blue Jays.

Ramirez, 36, is expected to seek at least $25 million per season, and his agent, Scott Boras, has recently indicated that he might pursue a six-year deal.

The Jays, like many clubs, would be concerned that Boras might prolong the negotiations, possibly preventing them from filling other needs.

However, the addition of Ramirez would transform the Blue Jays' offense and energize the team's fan base.

The Jays' current plan is to use Adam Lind and Travis Snider in the left field and DH spots. Ramirez could alternate at those positions with one of those players, perhaps enabling the Jays to trade the other.

Toronto, an international city where hockey is the No. 1 sport, seemingly would be a good fit for Ramirez, who has said he was unhappy with the suffocating environment in Boston, a passionate baseball town.

Even if the Jays retained Burnett, new club president Paul Beeston could persuade the team's ownership that the signing of Ramirez would further elevate the team in the intensely competitive American League East.

The Jays' Opening Day payroll of $97.8 million ranked 13th in the majors. It is unlikely that ownership would approve a significant enough increase for the team to sign both Burnett and Ramirez.


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Added: October 22, 2008

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