One of the most fearsome hitters in the game of yesterday, Manny Ramírez struck fear into many opposing pitchers the moment he stepped up to the plate. Leading the league in on-base percentage, slugging percentage and OPS on multiple occasions, he compiled 12 All-Star appearances along with 9 Silver Slugger awardsm including finishing as an MVP finalist twice. More importantly, he helped the Boston Red Sox win the World Series for the first time in over 85 years to break the hex in 2004 while capturing series MVP honours in the process. He would follow that up with another championship with the Red Sox three years later in 2007 for good measure.
But when it came to playing against the Jays, Ramírez was always ready to tee off like it was batting practice. His 54 home runs and 140 RBI in his career against the ballclub put him third all-time behind Rodriguez and David Ortiz, while his .947 OPS ranked him second behind George Brett as the highest OPS put up against the Jays by any player for their career. Despite his utter dominance over the years, love him or hate him, his “Manny being Manny” persona kept him a fan favourite whenever he came to play.
Ramírez will be entering his eighth year of eligibility this year after garnering 33.2% of the votes in 2023. Similar to Rodriguez, despite his stellar stats screaming sure-fire Hall of Famer, he has been linked to performance-enhancing drugs in the past that has kept his vote count down over the years. But unlike Rodriguez, time is not on his side as he has only three shots remaining to get into the Hall via the voting process. From the looks of it, Ramírez will have a huge mountain to climb if he wants to gain enshrinement.