Ex-Red Sox star Ramirez charged with hitting wife

By Manuel Rueda

MIAMI (Reuters) - Former Boston Red Sox baseball star Manny Ramirez was ordered by a Florida judge on Tuesday to stay away from his wife after he was charged with striking her in a domestic dispute.

The dread-locked former slugger, originally from the Dominican Republic, was charged with battery and ordered by Judge John Hurley to post $2,500 bail before he was released from a South Florida jail on Tuesday.

Juliana Ramirez gave a different account in her call to an emergency hotline operator on Monday.

"He's not doing anything anymore 'cause he knows I'm calling the police." she added on the call, which was made public by the Broward Sheriff's Office on Tuesday.

In a report written shortly after Ramirez was arrested, police officer Jose Campos said Juliana Ramirez had red swelling on the left side of her face that was "consistent" with her testimony.

Ramirez, a World Series Most Valuable Player, played in the majors for 18 seasons, hitting 555 home runs with a .312 batting average.

His career was marred by accusations he used performance enhancing drugs. He retired from baseball in the spring of 2011, shortly after he tested positive for a banned substance for the second time.

(Reporting by Manuel Rueda, Editing by Pascal Fletcher and John O'Callaghan)