Red Sox president Dave Dombrowski said Monday that Hanley Ramirez “wants to DH a lot.”
Which is good, because that’s where he’ll get the large majority of his starts in 2017. Hanley holds an impressive .331/.381/.634 career slash line as a designated hitter. The role seems to suit him well, and he could be headed for a huge year as the replacement to David Ortiz.
First things first, I love Hanley Ramirez. I’ve been on the Hanley train since the Red Sox traded him back in 2005 and I haven’t ever considered leaving. That being said this news is music to every Sox fans ears. While not an absolute disaster it can be agreed on that Hanley was not a great first baseman as he posted a -1.3 dWAR in 2016. The move to DH could open up more at bats for Ramirez as he has been injury prone throughout his career and staying off the field could help keep him fresh throughout the season.
Looking at this from a fantasy perspective should make owners salivate at the thought of landing Ramirez in the eighth round. Playing in an absolutely loaded lineup in one of the best hitting ballparks in the league led to a huge year in 2016 and the same can be expected in 2017. He should be locked into the four or five hole throughout the season and will have plenty of opportunities to rack up all kinds of fantasy goodness.