Red Sox designate Hanley Ramirez for assignment

Red Sox's J.D. Martinez celebrates after hitting a solo home run in the fourth inning against the Atlanta Braves at Fenway Park Friday

"We're going to put him in a spot where, I do feel, he's going to be a run producer", Cora added.

It's even more odd the Sox have been hitting him at the top of the order right up until Thursday, when he batted second for them, which could signal a disconnect between front office and field level coaching staff. The only problem is there is still a lot of baseball to be played this year. You need more than that from a DH or first baseman.

The finely tuned working duo of manager Alex Cora and president Dave Dombrowski are firmly in control of the Red Sox right now and for the foreseeable future.

"For how good of a player he is, it was going to be hard", Cora said of Ramirez coming off the bench.

Ramirez made his major league debut for the Red Sox in 2005, spent seven seasons with the Miami Marlins and three more with the Los Angeles Dodgers before rejoining the Red Sox in 2015.

They'll never say the option was a factor - a grievance from the MLBPA would surely follow - but ultimately, the Red Sox decided Ramirez wasn't worth that headache.

"He's been OK" at first base, said Dombrowski, but "he's not been Mitch Moreland, as far as that is concerned".

And neither is Cherington, whose two worst and most expensive decisions - Ramirez and Sandoval, the "Gold Bust Twins", as our paper pegged them - are if not off the books at least out of the clubhouse.

In designating Hanley Ramirez for assignment, the Red Sox dumped one of the purest hitters on their roster.

Dombrowski told reporters that manager Alex Cora suggested the move to designate Ramirez. I was like, 'That worked.' For him to come in to come in and catch a knuckleballer after not catching since Fort Myers or whenever the last time he caught, that caught my eye.

The reasoning, in part, was both players were good contact hitters. Everyone knows about my relationship with him. However, he had a $22 million vesting option for 2019 looming if he had reached 497 plate appearances for the year - something he was well on his way to doing. "I care about him and his family and everything, and I wish him the best".

Moreland, who is battling.311 with seven homers and 22 RBIs despite playing in 10 fewer games than Ramirez, will be the regular first baseman with J.D. Martinez, batting.328 with 15 homers and 41 RBIs, at DH.

When Ramirez's struggles this month continued, Cora said the team - and Ramirez - were better served with him gone. Meanwhile, the man the Sox traded to get him, Travis Shaw, has 42 home runs and 132 RBI in 193 games for the Brewers.

"I'm very, very excited".

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