Hanley Ramirez Traded: Welcome To L.A.

Hanley Ramirez of the Miami Marlins has been traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers as part of a four-player deal.

The Ramirez trade, according to an ESPN MLB source, sends the veteran infielder and reliever Randy Choate to L.A. in exchange for pitcher Nathan Eovaldi and a prospect.

Hanley Ramirez, the National League rookie of the year for 2006 and 2009 National League batting champ, was a career shortstop who moved to third base this season to accommodate former Met Jose Reyes who signed with the Marlins as a free agent. A lifetime .300 hitter and a thee-time All Star, Hanley Ramirez is batting only .246 in 2012.

On Monday, Miami traded Anibal Sanchez and Omar Infante, so it appears that the Marlins seem to be in the midst of a major salary dump and a team retooling. Team executives are also making noises about possibly unloading pitcher Josh Johnson and closer Heath Bell and perhaps others to cut payroll.

ESPN describes what the Dodgers have in mind for Ramirez especially given that the offensive output from their incumbent shortstop and third baseman leaves a lot to be desired:

The Dodgers are hoping that Ramirez will be reinvigorated by a change of scenery and give them another run producer to complement Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier in the batting order. The Dodgers rank 12th in the National League with 379 runs scored and are 13th in OPS at .684…Ramirez could play either spot on the left side of the infield for the Dodgers.

Ramirez, who is earning $15 million this season, started his career with the Boston Red Sox but was traded to the-then Florida Marlins in the Josh Beckett deal. This isn’t the first time that the Marlins dismantled their team–they did it after winning the World Series in 1997 and 2003.

The Marlins, with no chance to make the playoffs this year, are currently in fourth place in the National League East with a record of 45 and 52.

[photo by Robert Jonathan]