In the thick of a tight National League West race, the Los Angeles Dodgers acquired 12-time All-Star Manny Ramirez from the Boston Red Sox as part of a three-team deal at the July 31, 2008 non-waiver trade deadline.
Ramirez made an immediate impact for the club as he hit .396/.489/.743 with 14 doubles, 17 home runs and 53 RBI across 53 games en route to helping L.A. win the division and their first playoff series in over two decades.
Ramirez quickly became a fan favorite and re-signed with the Dodgers on a two-year contract the ensuing offseason. The organization capitalized on his popularity by launching a “Mannywood” section in left field for the 2009 season.
L.A. also held a bobblehead night for Ramirez that year, which memorably ended with him belting a pinch-hit, go-ahead grand slam against the Cincinnati Reds.
Andre Ethier, who was only in his fourth MLB season at the time, called ‘Mannywood Night’ and the Manny Ramirez bobblehead his favorite memory at Dodger Stadium, via the Dodgers’ official YouTube channel:
“I don’t know. That’s tough. I’ve had so many great memories at Dodger Stadium. I think one of my favorites has to be in , when we first got Manny Ramirez. He came over, was off to this great start and it was ‘Mannywood Night.’ All these people were in these dreadlocks and bandanas, and he didn’t start that game but comes in for a pinch-hit, has a game-winning home run in the eighth inning or something like that.
“It was ‘Mannywood’ bobblehead night or whatever it was. That was probably one of my favorites because that was my third year in the big leagues and it was like, ‘Wow. I’m playing with Manny Ramirez and I’m really in the big leagues now.’ It was my first pinch myself big league moment. Obviously there was a lot before that, but it was like, ‘I’m really here now.’”
Ramirez’s late-game heroics in the July 22, 2009, matchup against the Reds came to fruition after he was kept out of the starting lineup due to a bruised right hand that stemmed from being hit by a pitch the night before.
Ramirez batted .322/.433/.580 with 53 doubles, 44 home runs and 156 RBI in 223 games over parts of three seasons with the Dodgers. His 555 career home runs rank 15th in MLB history.
Ethier buys out theater for families to watch Disney’s ‘Encanto’
As part of his collaboration with nonprofit organization Not Without You L.A., Ethier recently bought out a movie theater so families could enjoy Disney’s “Encanto.”
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