The Oakland Athletics' spring training now has the potential to get a little more interesting. Manny Ramirez made his first appearance for the team today, taking some batting practice and talking to reporters. Per the San Francisco Chronicle, Manny expressed his gratitude to the A's for giving him a chance to play baseball again after his life took some strange and dark turns.
Ramirez said he thought he might never get another chance. "It feels good, let me tell you," he said. "I'm happy I've got a job. ... I thought I'd lose my family and my career, that was not easy."
Ramirez said he wants to show his children "when you have a problem, you can get up and fix it."
He knows not everyone will accept his return to the game, and he offered no apologies for his positive drug test, though he said, "Sometimes when you don't got God in your heart, you do stupid things."
Ramirez said he believes he can be a good example for the A's younger players. "I can tell them what happened to me," he said. "You don't want to be in a deep hole. ... Everyone knows my story. I can tell them how I changed, and the way I used to think."
Ramirez, once he's done serving his 50-game suspension to start the year, will try to make a difference at DH. See Manny take some swings below.
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