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Former All-Star Manny Ramirez to join A's: report

Manny Ramirez, a 12-times All-Star who retired last year rather than face a 100-game ban over a drug-policy issue, agreed to a deal with the Oakland Athletics, according to a report on Major League Baseball's (MLB) website on Monday.

An official announcement could come as early as Tuesday with Ramirez earning $500,000, slightly above the league minimum, as part of the minor league deal, the report said. He would be used by Oakland as a designated hitter.

Ramirez, who was suspended 50 games in 2009 for violating the league's drug policy, announced his retirement last April after being notified of a drug-policy issue.

He applied for reinstatement in December and, as a condition of his return, would receive a 50-game ban that would begin with the first game he is eligible to play.

Ramirez, 39, made his name with the Cleveland Indians and Boston but had spells with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Chicago White Sox and Tampa Bay Rays toward the end of his career.

(Reporting By Gene Cherry in Salvo North Carolina; Editing by Frank Pingue)