Aramis Ramirez this…Aramis Ramirez that…It seems like everyday we are talking about Aramis Ramirez. Rightfully so. Ramirez has quickly become one of the Cubs best assets in regards to the July 31 trade deadline. However, the likely scenario is that Ramirez will be traded in August and not July. Paul Kinzer, who represents Ramirez, confirmed what many of us have known for weeks in regards to whether or not Ramirez would accept a trade.
Kinzer told Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports that Ramirez may eventually be willing waive his no trade clause:
"“I don’t see it happening,” Kinzer said of a deal before the July 31 non-waiver deadline. “When his family goes back, and his kids go back to school, that could possibly loosen it up.“As of now, he has no interest. He loves Chicago. He always wanted to finish his career there.” Fox Sports"
This should come as no surprise as Cubbies Crib as well as multiple other outlets have been suggesting for the past couple of weeks now that Ramirez may be willing to waive his no trade clause to a contending team in August. But that will not stop teams like the Angels and Yankees from making a push for Ramirez before July 31. As we get closer to July 31, it will be interesting to see if Ramirez’s stance changes. There is no question that family has a major impact on Ramirez’s decision, but, I find it hard to believe that he would sacrifice a chance at winning a World Series title this season in order to spend a few more weeks with his family.
As for Ramirez wanting to finish his career with the Cubs, it is safe to say that is not going to happen. No matter how good Ramirez’s 2011 stats look at the end of the season, there is no scenario where the Cubs will pick up his $14 million option for the 2012 season. Even if the Cubs wanted to sign Ramirez to a less-expensive multi-year deal in the off-season, Ramirez may not be interested in doing so. Ramirez is putting himself in line to earn a relatively big contract this off-season, and considering the Cubs are just now beginning to get from underneath some bad contracts, it does not seem likely that they would risk making the same mistake with Ramirez.
As for the well-discussed option in Ramirez’s contract in 2012, contrary to a recent report on Cubbies Crib and ESPN Chicago, the option technically does vest if Ramirez is traded. But, Kinzer told Rosenthal that Ramirez would request that the option be dropped if he is traded, thus making him a free agent this winter. If anything, that news will only increase the amount of teams that have interest in Ramirez. Though I find it hard to believe that any team will trump the amount of interest that the Angels have in the Cubs’ third baseman.
For some reason or another, I still have a feeling that Ramirez may be willing to approve a trade before the July 31 trade deadline. I know Ramirez has stated over and over and over that he has no intention of waiving his no trade clause, but, something just makes me feel that Ramirez may be willing to waive his no trade clause. That would be beneficial to the Cubs. Trading Ramirez in July would be a lot less complex and potentially more prosperous as opposed to trading Ramirez in August. One thing that is certain, the Angels and Yankees may pull out all stops to acquire Ramirez before the non-waiver trade deadline on July 31.