As we all know, the Royals yesterday parted with a player to be named later for 26-year-old RH reliever Ramon Ramirez.
Just call him Max Effort
Here's what Baseball America had to say about the trade:
Released by the Rangers after one season as an outfielder in the Dominican Summer League in 1997, Ramirez signed with the Hiroshima Carp as a pitcher in 2002 but pitched just three innings in the Japanese majors. After he impressed Yankees scouts in winter ball, they outbid the Phillies by purchasing his rights from the Carp for $350,000. The Rockies picked him in their trade of Shawn Chacon to the Yankees at the 2005 trade deadline. At his best, Ramirez pitches at 92-94 mph with his fastball and complements it with a tilting slider and a changeup. Though he carries with him the stigma of being a short righthander (he's listed at 5-foot-11, 190 pounds), Ramirez found big league success in 2006 when he was perhaps Colorado's finest rookie performer. He appeared in 61 games, going 3-4, 3.46 with 61 strikeouts and 27 walks in 68 innings. Ramirez crashed back to earth in 2007, posting an 8.31 ERA in 17 innings of work as he pitched through a strain near his right elbow. He was fine for Triple-A Colorado Springs, though, going 4-0, 2.28 with a 35-16 K-BB ratio in 28 innings last season.
Feeling better this spring, Ramirez reportedly can throw his breaking ball without pain, making him a worthwhile gamble for the Royals.
He was once in the Yankees organization. Don't hold it against him.
2006 3.46 ERA, 67.2 IP, 58 H, 5 HR, 27 BB, 61 SO, 1.256 WHIP
2007 8.31 ERA, 17.1 IP, 21 H, 2 HR, 6 BB, 15 SO, 1.558 WHIP
Career stats away from Coors Field:
1.08 ERA 33.1 IP, 26 H, 1 HR, 13 BB, 27 K, 1.172 WHIP
Meaningless 2008 spring training stats:
1.34 ERA, 13.2 IP, 7 H, 1 HR, 3 BB, 14 K, 0.730 WHIP (updated 3/27)
He appears to be a younger version of Joel Peralta. They are both short for a major league pitcher at 5'11", but both have pretty good velocity and strikeout rates. Ramirez gets a few more strikeouts and Peralta allows a few fewer walks. Of course, the sample size for Ramirez's stats is very small, so he could go in any number of directions. Clearly Moore and his people like Ramirez and his stuff. The good news from spring training is that it's clear that he's pitching without pain and he's able to throw all of his pitches, including his very good breaking ball.
Rockies fans clearly liked Ramirez and were excited to see what he'd do this year. Here is a sampling of the comments I've read: