Unipol Fortitudo Bologna has chosen former Major Leaguer Julio Ramirez to take over as new cleanup hitter in the upcoming season. The 33-year-old Dominican outfielder batted .167/.216/.229 in 84 games for the Florida Marlins, Chicago White Sox, Anaheim Angels and San Francisco Giants between 1999 and 2005. In the Minors he had a batting line of .260/.307/.405 with 102 homeruns, 622 runs and 484 RBI in 1,110 games.
Since Ramirez’ release from affiliated minor league ball after the 2006 season he is playing in the independent league circuit. In 2010 he wore the jersey of the Calgary Vipers. Together with Edgar Clemente, he is supposed to form the heart of the batting order for Fortitudo in the Italian Baseball League this season. They are now looking to find a foreign reliever, who replaces Victor Moreno as closer in game one. He had signed with the Detroit Tigers this winter and hopes to get a shot in the big leagues this year.