Cubs

Manny Ramirez To Join I-Cubs On Thursday

Manny Ramirez. (Getty Images)

Manny Ramirez. (Getty Images)

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(CBS) Manny Ramirez will make his debut as a player-coach with the Triple-A Iowa Cubs on Thursday, the team announced Wednesday.

The I-Cubs start a four-games series Thursday in Colorado Springs.

The 42-year-old Ramirez has spent the past several weeks working out at the Cubs’ practice facility in Mesa, Ariz. He signed a contract with the organization in late May, with the goal of Cubs president Theo Epstein — who has had a relationship with Ramirez since their days in Boston in the early 2000s — being that he could be a positive influence on the Cubs’ prized prospects in Triple-A. Just how Ramirez will split up his player-coach duties is unclear, but he won’t take at-bats away that would stunt the development of young prospects, the Cubs have previously said.

Ramirez hit .259 with three homers in 30 games at the Rangers’ Triple-A Round Rock affiliate last summer.