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Manny to Sox fans: 'I love you guys'

Posted by Dan Shaughnessy, Globe Staff  August 1, 2008 07:31 PM

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LOS ANGELES -- Decked out in a No. 99 Dodgers jersey, and LA cap and a pair of sunglasses, Manny Ramirez was introduced at Dodger Stadium this afternoon, answering questions for just over 10 minutes and sending a message to Red Sox fans.

"I want to say from the bottom of my heart, I want to thank the fans of Boston," Ramirez said. "I love you guys. You've been with me through ups and downs."

In front of a very large media contingent, Ramirez was also peppered with questions about his controversial departure from the Red Sox. He didn't bite.

"Boston is in the past," Ramirez said. "When people ask about Boston I put my brain on pause."

Specifically, he was asked about reports that Red Sox veterans voted to trade him.

"I'm not going to waste any energy when people talk like that," he said. "I want people to judge me on what I do here, not what I did in Boston."

His agent, Scott Boras, offered the following comment on Manny's departure:

"In Boston, the fans, the organization, and the teammates were never an issue," Boras said. "He preferred another city along the lines of the lifestyle he had in Cleveland."

Ramirez, who said he got three hours of sleep last night, flew on a commercial flight from Boston to Los Angeles earlier today, arriving at the ballpark about 20 minutes before the press conference.

He'll play his first game in Dodger blue tonight, facing Randy Johnson and the D-Backs (10:40 p.m. ET).

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