When the Miami Marlins traded former All-Star Hanley Ramirez to the Los Angeles Dodgers, it represented a sort of shift for the franchise. After opening a new stadium and escalating their payroll in the offseason, the Marlins have apparently seen enough of their 2012 roster and want to go in a different direction.
The Marlins beginning to blow things up means lots for the N.L. East as a division, it is now clearly a two-team race between the Braves and Nationals. It could, however, help the Nationals more than anybody.
Ramirez may not be the MVP candidate he was in 2009, but perhaps no team felt the wrath of Hanley more than Washington. Ramirez has hit more home runs (27) and RBI (74) against the Nationals than any other team in his career. He also carries a career average of .342 against the club, part of a 1.067 OPS.
Hanley may have regressed back into mediocrity over the last few years, but against Washington that hasnt been the case. This season he has a .355 average with two homers and five runs in nine games against the Nats.
Having him out of the division should be a positive for Washington, especially with a 42-74 record against the franchise since Ramirez became an everyday player in 2006. He does, however, boost a Dodgers lineup that could find itself playing the Nationals in October if both teams qualify for the postseason.