Sydney Blue Sox cut MLB legend Ramirez

Shayne Hope
·2-min read

The Sydney Blue Sox have axed Manny Ramirez without the baseball legend playing an ABL game, citing an undisclosed "medical issue" as the reason for their decision.

Ramirez, a two-time World Series champion and 12-time All Star, joined the Blue Sox last month amid much fanfare.

But the ABL season hasn't gone as planned, with the coronavirus pandemic wreaking havoc on the schedule.

Ramirez was withdrawn from the season opener against Melbourne and the Blue Sox on Monday confirmed they had since parted ways with the 48-year-old slugger.

"Combined with the uncertainty of the season and the ongoing medical issue that is preventing Manny Ramirez from playing and training with the Sydney Blue Sox, we have decided to release Manny," Blue Sox chief executive Adam Dobb said in a media statement.

"This is extremely disappointing for the Sydney Blue Sox, but we owe it to our fans and the other teams to make a decision now.

"The level of investment to get him here meant this was never a PR stunt.

"It was never was our intention to have him not participate in the ABL this season."

Ramirez was the World Series MVP in 2004 when the Boston Red Sox famously broke their 86-year title drought, but has also courted controversy throughout his decorated career.

The nine-time Silver Slugger left MLB in 2011 when he refused to serve a 100-game for a second doping violation.

Sydney did not clarify the exact nature of Ramirez's medical condition.

"We are unable to comment further and wish to respect all of our current players and staff by continuing preparations for the remainder of the ABL season," Dobb said.

"We are doing everything we can to get restarted."

Coronavirus interruptions have limited the Blue Sox to playing just two games this season, which will end on January 31.

A modified ABL championship series has been slated for February 5-7.