During Wednesday night’s Texas Rangers-Minnesota Twins game, the ever woeful and insufferable ESPN announcer Rick Suttcliffe was posed a question by his partner in the booth Dave O’Brien regarding Manny Ramirez, who was placed on waivers by the Los Angeles Dodgers this week. He basically said he didn’t care for him. He thinks he would be a cancerous pick-up and also believes he has nothing left in the tank.

Sutcliffe, as usual, is full of baloney. Yes, Ramirez has his problems. He’s gained a pretty poor reputation, with antics that have sometimes been hilarious and sometimes very serious and detrimental to the team. His attitude on the field and through the media, which fueled his departure from the Boston Red Sox, was as bad as it gets.

Some believe that he has now worn out his welcome in Los Angeles, too. I just think the team, 12 games out in the National League West, has become a seller and wants to get value in return for Ramirez, whose contract runs out after the year.

With that said, he may have rubbed some of his teammates the wrong way in Los Angeles, as he did in Boston, but the guy is a future Hall of Famer. He is, in my opinion, one of the five purest hitters in baseball history. And he can still hit. Ramirez, 38, is batting .313 with eight homers and 40 RBI during a 2010 season that has been shortened by three disabled list stints.

The Chicago White Sox want his bat, and they may get the chance to bring him to the South side. They claimed him and are reportedly in the works of hammering out a deal with the Dodgers, according to the Chicago Sun Times. This is a very intelligent move by Chicago, a team that is currently 3 1/2 games behind the Twins.

Ramirez would have to approve a trade, considering he has a no-trade clause, but he reportedly told his friends he would be willing to go to Chicago. If all goes as planned, the White Sox would get a powerful hitter who could sway the division into their direction, and Ramirez would get out of Los Angeles and join in on the pennant race fun.

Ramirez is unpredictable, injury-prone, a nuisance, old, and doesn’t hustle all the time. Still, it’s Manny Ramirez, a 17-year veteran with 2,500-plus hits, 550-plus homers, and, among other otherworldly statistics, a .313 career average. I’m sure the White Sox would gladly take the baggage that may still be attached if Ramirez produces like he’s still capable of.

Carlos Quentin and Andruw Jones, a duo that has seen action both in the outfield and as the designated hitter, have 41 homers combined but are hitting just .222. The two deserve time down the stretch despite their dreadful average, but Ramirez would seemingly be an upgrade over both.

Alex Rios is their center fielder and Juan Pierre holds down right field. Chicago wouldn’t bring Ramirez over to platoon, nor would he agree to. Given his erratic outfield play throughout his career, the White Sox would ideally plug him in as their designated hitter and let Quentin and Jones rotate in and out in left.

This is the perfect kind of team for Ramirez, too. He was a lovable character in Boston until it turned ugly. He was just one of the Kevin Millar-proclaimed “Idiots” that always had an enthusiastic attitude, though he would get lackadaisical and more than occasionally drift in and out of his own little world.

The White Sox have some oddballs on their team already, none bigger than manager Ozzie Guillen. Oh what a pair Ramirez and Guillen would make! A match made in baseball heaven.

It looks like it might happen, too. Aside from the Padres, none of the National League contenders need a bat; and I don’t think San Diego would want to bring someone with Ramirez’s background in and have his aged legs play the outfield down the stretch.

The San Francisco Giants already have six quality outfielders and certainly don’t have room for another.

Boston won’t go down that road again, and even if they tried, Ramirez would probably pull a Johnny Damon and decide not to return.

New York’s General Manager Brian Cashman has said his team plans to stand pat.

The Rays could be interested, but they may have other plans.

And the Twins already have Jim Thome, who is still very serviceable despite being one a member of baseball’s version of AARP.

With that said, best of luck to the White Sox. If Ramirez is happy, hustles, and gets along with Guillen (which shouldn’t be too hard) and the rest of the team, this could be a steal for Chicago. And I believe it will. Ramirez may have more negatives than positives, but his positives outweigh them. He’s a risk worth taking, a risk that could propel the White Sox into the playoffs.

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