For those wondering, Manny Ramirez does not have to be completely idle during his 50-game suspension for violating baseball’s drug policy.
Ramirez, who turns 40 on May 30, is eligible to play in spring-training games, according to major-league sources.
Once the season starts, he can work out with either major- or minor-league clubs, provided he leaves by the time the gates open. He also can appear in games during extended spring training, which generally is for players who are not ready to play for a full-season club, either due to injury or inexperience.
Finally, as his suspension draws to a close, Ramirez can play in the minors on a rehabilitation assignment. That assignment, however, would consist of only 10 games, not the normal 20.
The Oakland Athletics remain the front-runners to sign Ramirez, but first want to add a reliever, according to major-league sources; they have been in talks with the Texas Rangers about right-hander Koji Uehara.
The Baltimore Orioles have publicly backed off Ramirez. The Toronto Blue Jays showed interest at one point, but the talks failed to progress, sources said.
It is unclear whether other clubs are in the mix.
— Ken Rosenthal