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Posted: Monday December 29, 2008 10:10PM; Updated: Tuesday December 30, 2008 11:47AM

Red Sox made play for SS Ramirez

Story Highlights

The Marlins were said to be most interested in Jacoby Ellsbury

Boston is happy with Jed Lowrie, and may have used Ramirez in center

By Jon Heyman and Tom Verducci, SI.com

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The Red Sox would need to overwhelm the Marlins in order to acquire Hanley Ramirez.
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At one point this winter, the Red Sox made a play to re-acquire Marlins superstar Hanley Ramirez, league sources tell SI.com. But while the Marlins listened to Boston's overtures, talks were quickly scuttled and it appears there's very little chance they will be revived as Florida isn't anxious to trade its best player.

The Marlins were said to be most interested in a centerfielder, and it's believed Boston's promising young centerfielder Jacoby Ellsbury and talented pitching prospect Clay Buchholz were among those mentioned in a potential package for Ramirez, who began in Boston's organization before being traded to the Marlins after the 2005 season in the deal that sent Josh Beckett and Mike Lowell to the Red Sox.

It was originally believed that these recent discussions came after Boston lost out in the running for Mark Teixeira, who signed an eight-year, $180 million deal with the Yankees last week, but in fact, they were held a few weeks prior to that. Though the Red Sox can't quite match the Yankees dollar for dollar (Boston was believed to be offering at least $170 million over eight guaranteed years plus two additional years that could be voided by the team based on plate appearances), Boston is willing to think creatively to try to enhance its offense.

Ramirez signed a six-year, $70 million contract extension with the Marlins during the season.

While the cost-conscious Marlins listened to Boston's proposals, Florida would need to be overwhelmed to think about dealing Ramirez, who's considered one of the best young offensive players in the game. Since Boston is said to be happy with Jed Lowrie at shortstop, it's possible the Red Sox might have considered using Ramirez in centerfield.

In 2008, Teixeira posted his fifth straight 30-homer, 100-RBI season, and Ramirez joined the 30-30 Club with 33 home runs and 35 stolen bases while also batting .301.

 
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