Manny Ramirez timeline
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Manny Ramirez: Career of controversy

Manny Ramirez timeline

Ramirez makes his major league debut for the Cleveland Indians on Sept. 2 versus the Minnesota Twins, going 0 for 4. The next day, against the New York Yankees, he goes 3 for 4 with two home runs and a double. (Vincent Laforet /Allsport)
Manny Ramirez timeline

Having played in only 120 games in 2002 because of a hamstring injury, Ramirez misses more games with pharyngitis. Late in August, while supposedly too ill to play in a series against the Yankees, he is spotted in a hotel bar, then skips a doctor’s appointment ordered by the Red Sox.

A few days later, he refuses to enter a game as a pinch-hitter and is benched for one game by then-manager Grady Little.

After the season, the Red Sox put him on irrevocable waivers in an attempt to dump his massive contract, but all 29 other teams pass and he remains in Boston. (Charles Krupa / Associated Press)
Manny Ramirez timeline

Ramirez is criticized on several occasions for not hustling to first base after hitting grounders in the infield. Trade rumors also dog him, and after the Red Sox are eliminated in the first round of the playoffs, Ramirez demands to be traded, threatening not to report to spring training if his request is not met. He later tells reporters he has dropped his demand, though his agents say he still wishes to be traded. (Winslow Townson / Associated Press)
Manny Ramirez timeline

Ramirez reports more than a week late to spring training. Because of tendinitis in his knee, he then misses 22 of 30 games during one stretch of the season, prompting the Boston Globe to ask: “Manny Being Injured or Manny Being Manny?”

The American League‘s leading vote-getter, he skips the all-star game because of the tender knee, prompting Commissioner Bud Selig to criticize him. (Joel Auerbach / U.S. Presswire)
Manny Ramirez timeline

Ramirez and Kevin Youkilis scuffle in the Red Sox dugout during a June 5 game versus the Tampa Bay Rays. Tired of what he viewed as Youkilis’ chronic complaining about the strike zone, Ramirez is caught on camera slapping his teammate, with sources saying he also told Youkilis to “cut that . . . out.”

Jack McCormick, the Red Sox’s longtime traveling secretary, is shoved by Ramirez on June 29 in Houston during a dispute over game passes. He apologizes and is disciplined internally by the team.

In July, cameras catch Ramirez relaxing inside Fenway’s Green Monster during pitching changes. One photo shows him holding up a sports drink; in another, he is talking on a cellphone.

Ramirez benches himself just before the start of a July 28 game against Yankees, saying he has a sore knee. The Red Sox order an MRI on both knees, and the result shows no damage. When he does play, the slugger is criticized by reporters and fans for not running out ground balls.

On July 30, Ramirez tells ESPN reporters, “The Red Sox don’t deserve a player like me.” One day later, he becomes a Dodger in a three-way deal including the Pittsburgh Pirates.

In 53 regular-season games with the Dodgers, Ramirez hits .396 with 17 home runs and 53 runs batted in -- and the only controversy he is involved in comes when he balks at manager Joe Torre‘s request that he have his hair trimmed.

Ramirez hits .520 and four home runs and 10 runs batted in during the playoffs. (Los Angeles Times)
Manny Ramirez timeline

When agent Scott Boras can’t find any other takers, Ramirez signs a two-year, $45-million contract with the Dodgers on March 4.

Thursday, after waiving his right to appeal, Ramirez began a 50-game suspension for violating major league baseball’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs.

-- Mike Hiserman (Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images)