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The Tigres de Aragua won the league championship, buoyed down the stretch unfortunately by another tragedy: the death of teammate and former Texas Rangers pitcher Rosman Garcia in a late-December car accident. They finished the season strong, and Ramos, who hit .281 with a .378 on-base percentage in 19 playoff games, was no exception. Finally, he was relaxed, not thinking as much, he said, as he was when he hit .218 during the regular season.

One more step on his road back to normalcy.

With the starting catching role thrust fully onto this shoulders this season, starting opening day — both in Chicago on April 5 and in Washington on April 12 — could be another step.

“If the team gives me that opportunity I will be very, very excited to catch that game,” he said. “Hopefully, the fans will stand up, clap their hands and say good words for me. I want to hear that.”