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M’s Release Horacio Ramirez; Phils To Target?

To say Horacio Ramirez hasn’t cut it in Seattle is an understatement:

2007 – 98 IP / 8-7 / 7.16 ERA / 42 BB / 40 K

And you guys thought Adam Eaton was bad.

That line, accompanied with a mediocre spring for the lefthander, made him expendable for the Mariners, who released him today. Ramirez was acquired via a trade with Atlanta — the Braves received relief pitcher Rafael Soriano for him. That John Schuerholz knew how to deal ’em.

I presented Ramirez’ poor 2007 line from the onset because the rest of his resume isn’t totally bad. Before his very, very bad 2007, his career ERA stood just north of 4.00. Most of that time was spent in Atlanta as a starter. In 2003, he went 12-4 with a 4.00 ERA, striking out 100 while walking 72. In 2006, before the Seattle trade, he was 5-5 in 14 starts with a 4.48 ERA. Mind you, he spent good portions of a few seasons with injuries.

Ramirez’ strikeout/walk ratio isn’t good at all (1.19), but it’s because he doesn’t strike out many hitters to begin with. His walks are relatively low (the most being 67 in a full 32-start season); in fact, Ramirez is a steady ground ball pitcher, which is his best asset. His career ground ball/fly ball ratio is 1.65.

We know the Phillies are trying to settle both a fifth starter race and some bullpen spots, and according to this earlier report I linked by Randy Miller, the Phillies may be in the market for a left-handed bullpen arm. Ramirez is only costing the Mariners 1/6 of his 2008 salary, meaning the team taking the flier would have to pay a little over $2.2MM for him. In order to have a seasoned left-handed arm out there — someone who can both relieve and start — is it feasible for the Phillies to look over a putrid 2007 and nab Ramirez?

Phillies lose: Yet again, the Phils drop one, as the pitching couldn’t do much good. Again. Fabio Castro came in and got hit around (five hits) for two runs in two frames. Travis Blackley gave up a home run, another hit and two walks in his three innings, but also struck out five. Clay Condrey also surrendered a run. Offensively, the Phils only managed an RBI from Greg Dobbs.

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