Cubs third baseman Aramis Ramirez continues to be the subject of intense trade speculation, with the July 31 nonwaiver deadline fast approaching.
However, one person controls whether Ramirez will be traded -- and that's Ramirez.
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He reiterated Monday that his stance on a trade has not wavered and that he does not want to leave the Cubs.
"I'm at the same point I was two weeks ago, three weeks ago," he said. "Right now, I'm not interested in a trade."
Ramirez does not have a no-trade clause per se. He has something more powerful: 10-and-5 rights. That is, he is player with at least 10 years in the major leagues and five with the same club. As such, he can veto any deal involving him.
Last year, first baseman Derrek Lee turned down a trade to the Angels before finally accepting one to the Braves. The players association takes this collectively bargained right very seriously and has since its inception in the early 1970s.
Ramirez says he has more important reasons for not wanting to be traded: family.
"It is my family consideration," he said. "If I was single and by myself, then I'd move anywhere and be in a hotel for the last two months. It's too tough with my family. I earned the right to be in this position, and it's my decision."
Ramirez's contract calls for his $16 million club option to be picked up if he's traded. There have been reports that he'd ask for that provision to be waived if he were traded so he could test the free-agent market.
But nothing happens until Ramirez says it happens.
No word yet:
Cubs manager Mike Quade said has not heard from Major League Baseball yet over his postgame rant on the umpiring Sunday.
Quade complained -- and it looked rightfully so -- about a blown pickoff call at second base Sunday by umpire Lance Barrett. He also referred vaguely to what he believed were inappropriate comments allegedly made by umpires toward Cubs players.
"That's down the road," Quade said of hearing from MLB. "I'm beyond that and onto the Phillies. There were some things said in the midst of all that stuff. I obviously disagreed with a few calls. It was a rough series in a lot of different ways. We'll move on and let that take care of itself."
Quade added he was fully aware that what he said Sunday could be taken as excuse-making for a losing team.
"I have all the respect for these guys," he said of the umpires. "Everybody's trying to do the right thing. You never want to look like ... we had opportunities to get ourselves out of the messes ... it can look like you're making an excuse when you do that. I don't want that. I don't make excuses. But I do look at what takes place, and sometimes I think it's important to mention it."