"Humble" Ramirez arrives, "feels great" about playing for Rays
Manny Ramirez was dressed casually and looked relaxed when he arrived at Tampa airport Sunday night.
He was pleasant enough as photographer Kathleen Flynn and I approached him as he stepped off the tram after flying in from Phoenix, and actually asked if I was there to pick him up. When I told him I'd seen a limo driver waiting for him downstairs, he laughed and said he didn't need a limo, that was just a "humble" guy.
Ramirez was polite in a short chat as he rode the escalator, saying he "feels great" about playing for the Rays, talking about how he was in tremendous shape after extensive workouts at the Athletes Performance Institute in Arizona, and smiling when reminded of his exceptional numbers at Tropicana Field (48 extra base hits, 72 RBIs and 1.003 OPS in 77 games).
And as for now playing against the Red Sox, for whom he used to star, and going back to Fenway Park, he said: "It's old news, I did that when I was with Los Angeles.''
Ramirez had to pass a physical and complete the paperwork for his one-year reported $2-million deal, and there should be a formal announcement and press conference in the next couple days.