Asked if Ramirez was primed for another 50 stolen base season, Gonzalez said: “I hope not. The reason being, the more your body gets banged up—the wear and tear. He’s a guy who hits .300, he hits you 30 [home runs], and has a chance to drive in a lot of runs. I’m scared, because the more you attempt to steal, even if you don’t steal, you’re diving back to first base. You’re getting beaten up pretty good.
“He can handle it now, being as young as he is. Hopefully, the home runs go up and the stolen bases go down.”
Rather than see Ramirez risk injury stealing bases, Gonzalez enjoys watching his shortstop sprinting from first-to-third, or first-to-home on hits. “We’ll see,” Gonzalez said. “If he has a chance to steal 50, as long as he’s not beaten up, we’ll see.”
Hitting leadoff, Ramirez has the green light to steal, but the team has instructed him to hold as well. “There are times that we’ve shut him down, depending on the series,” Gonzalez said. “Some teams have three or four guys who control the running game.”
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