The circus is coming to town for the Oakland Athletics. Reports indicate that slugger Manny Ramirez has joined the Oakland Athletics under the terms of a minor league contract. ESPN is reporting the deal is worth approximately $500,000, but nothing official is out there yet.
As expected, the deal is low risk for the A's as they get to see if Manny still has something left in his bat. Ramirez would be the team's designated hitter, although he would not do so until after serving his 50-game suspension for a failed drug test. He will be able to participate in spring training with the team and will get to play in extended spring training while serving the suspension. This would give the A's plenty of time to evaluate what he can still bring to the table.
If Manny has something left in his bat, he and newly-signed Yoenis Cespedes could provide a strong 1-2 punch in the middle of the Oakland lineup. The A's have struggled to find solid bats in recent seasons, pretty much since the departure of Frank Thomas. Neither Cespedes nor Ramirez is a sure thing, but they are relatively low risk gambles for the low payroll A's. If they pay off, this team suddenly could turn into a modest contender.