Tampa Bay Rays bullpen catcher and former minor league player Jean Ramirez passed away suddenly at 28.
The team confirmed his tragic death on social media and wrote: “In Loving Memory.”
The Rays baseball family mourns the loss of bullpen catcher Jean Ramirez pic.twitter.com/CSasYv7Aqm
— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) January 11, 2022
The news of Ramirez’s death was difficult and unexpected, and the organization provided no other details.
The native of Puerto Rico died in Fort Worth, Texas, where he attended high school and still lived.
Forth Worth police did not release further information, and the medical examiner’s office will report the cause of death when available.
RIP Jean Ramirez
Former Renegade played 28 games during our 2017 championship season https://t.co/dEY3WkDOrL
— HV Renegades (@HVRenegades) January 12, 2022
Tampa Bay Times reported:
“Jean was an incredible teammate and friend,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said in a statement shared in the same post. “He brought so much passion and energy each day to our clubhouse and bullpen, and his love for the Rays and baseball was evident to all who interacted with him. He had the biggest heart and most infectious smile. We extend our deepest condolences to his family and friends. Jean will be deeply missed.”
“He was a caring teammate and friend,” Neander said. “He exuded so much joy in all he did, and his kind heart was truly a gift to all. As we process this unexpected and difficult loss, we are grateful for the times we shared with Jean.”
Rays reliever Colin Poche, a former college teammate, shared his feelings on Twitter.
“RIP to Jean and prayers with his family,” Poche wrote. “From being teammates at Arkansas and again with the Rays, I can’t say enough good words about Jean and the kindness he showed to other people. He was such a great friend and his presence will truly be missed #RIP.”
The U.S. Sun added:
In a 2019 interview with The Athletic, Ramirez spoke about his ambitions to become a manager, bench coach or coordinator with a Major League team.
His father, Carlos, is a longtime coach who is currently an assistant with Hawaii Pacific University.
In college, Ramirez played baseball at the University of Arkansas, Grayson County College and Illinois State University, graduating in 2016 with a bachelor’s degree in science.
He was a native of Bayamón, Puerto Rico but attended high school and lived in Fort Worth, Texas. The Rays’ 2020 World Series run was a homecoming for him.
“This is the best moment of my life.”