Manny likely to get stint in minors

DENVER (AP)– Suspended outfielder Manny Ramirez will be sent to the minor leagues
for a week to 10 days as part of a rehabilitation assignment prior to rejoining the Dodgers.
Ramirez is serving a 50-game ban for violating baseball’s drug policy. He’s eligible to
rejoin the Dodgers on July 3.
Manager Joe Torre said before the Dodgers’ game against the Colorado Rockies on Wednesday that Ramirez has been doing conditioning work on his own in California but may soon go to the team’s spring training facility in GlendaleZZGB, Ariz., to work out.
While the Dodgers are still developing a plan for his return, Torre said Ramirez would
need some time in the minors to get ready to return to Los Angeles.
“We’ve still got a ways to go with him,” Torre said. “The most important thing was getting
all the cobwebs cleaned out with all the things he’s going through and that he’ll continue
to go through until he gets back and starts playing and the questions sort of taper
off.”
Torre said he hasn’t spoken with Ramirez in recent days but the team knows he has been working hard on his own to stay in shape. The manager also said he’s looking forward to Ramirez going to the Dodgers’ spring facility to get more baseball-specific work.
“I think he’s not ready for that right now” because of the media attention that would
generate, Torre said. “Eventually, obviously, he’s going to have to, but it hasn’t been
spelled out yet exactly what he’s going to do anyway. More important now for him is to be
in a routine and to get himself starting to think ahead as opposed to thinking about
what’s been going on.”

Vote for Manny

NEW YORK (AP) — Jason Rosenberg was heading home and listening to satellite radio
when he heard that Manny Ramirez was fourth among National League outfielders in initial All-Star voting. By the end of the night, a new Web site was born: Vote for Manny.
“I said it would be funny if Manny got elected, because he’s coming off a suspension on
July 3 and the All-Star game is a week later, so they don’t even have that sort of
built-in protection,” the 39-year-old from suburban Ardsley said Wednesday. “So I got
home, and just quickly threw a Web site together.”
Rosenberg got voteformanny.blogspot.com up and running Tuesday night, designed to point out that MLB has no rule preventing players coming off drug suspensions from becoming All-Stars. It links to an online All-Star ballot and implores fans: “Remember, vote early and often!”
Ramirez was suspended for 50 games on May 7 after his drug test showed artificial
testosterone and baseball investigators obtained documentation that he received HCG, a
banned female fertility drug taken by some after steroid cycles to restart natural
testosterone production.
In the initial All-Star vote released Tuesday, Ramirez was on 442,763 ballots, trailing
Milwaukee’s Ryan Braun (663,164), the Chicago Cubs’ Alfonso Soriano (545,354) and the New York Mets’ Carlos Beltran (476,843).
“The All-Star game is for the fans and I think if he got voted in, then it would be
appropriate for him to play,” said Philadelphia’s Charlie Manuel, the NL manager. “Once he serves his suspension, he’s paid his penalty and he’s just like every other player.”