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Manny Ramirez on PED suspensions: ‘Everybody makes mistakes’

03.13.14 at 12:23 pm ET
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As he works out on his own and attempts to get another shot at the major leagues, former Red Sox slugger Manny Ramirez finally appears to be taking personal responsibility for his two suspensions related to the use of performance-enhancing drugs.

“When you make a mistake in life, no matter what you do, you’re going to pay the price,” Ramirez told Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal in a phone interview from Miami. “That’s what happened to all of the players that did it. I’m not going to judge people. Everybody is human. Everybody makes mistakes. …

“You’re going to feel guilty about what you did. But you did it. You move on. And you learn from it.”

Added Ramirez: “In your life, you’re going to mature. Sometimes you’ve got to fall and get up to know who you really are. That’s what happened to me. I fell. I got up. Now I know what I really want in life.”

Ramirez, who indicated he’d like to become a hitting coach after he retires, said all players can learn from his mistakes — not just younger ones.

“I use myself as an example to my son who is in college, playing baseball: ‘Look what daddy went through because daddy didn’t do things right,’ ” Ramirez said. “When you do things right, you don’t have to look back. You always look forward.

“Sometimes, we get caught up in the moment. We start hanging out with the wrong people. But you know, everything in life happens for a reason, so you can appreciate what you are.

“Now I appreciate it more and I’m so hungry to get back, just to get that feeling that I used to have before. I appreciate my family more, my kids, everything that God gave me.”

Ramirez, 41, insists he can help a team, in a manner similar to veterans Raul Ibanez (Mariners) and Jason Giambi (Indians), although he acknowledged it’s unreasonable to expect him to hit like he did in his prime.

“I’m 41 years old and you’re asking me if I could still hit the way I used to hit,” he said. “Nobody is going to hit like when they were 25, 27 or 30 when they’re 41 years old. I don’t care how good you are. It’s not going to happen. But you can contribute in other ways.”

Ramirez was arrested three years ago and faced a misdemeanor domestic-violence charge for allegedly slapping his wife, Juliana. Although the state of Florida later dropped the charge when Juliana failed to cooperate with investigators, Ramirez said the incident changed his life by prompting him to become a Christian.

“When I came out of jail, the court, they didn’t let me see my kids,” said Ramirez, who has three sons. “I was sleeping in another house. One day I woke up and looked myself in the mirror. And I said to myself, something needed to change. I needed to change.

“I started going to church, going to Bible study, getting into the Lord. I started reading more and listening to the Lord talking to me. It was awesome. I don’t regret it. The Bible says, ‘What happens if a man accomplished everything in the world and loses his soul?’ “

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