Yes, that Ryan Howard, the 37-year-old former Phillies MVP who played in his last major league game almost 11 months ago. He was signed by the Atlanta Braves to start the 2017 season on a minor league contract.
COMMENT: This can be Manchester City's season in the Premier League
Perhaps we've got to ensure that all our players give their all and hope that City are off-colour, but it can happen that way. We were not able with those players to find a solution. "I believe he can do well in the Premier League", Clement said.
Howard spent a little over two weeks with the Braves' Triple-A affiliate and the results weren't encouraging, leading to his release: he slashed.184/.238/.263 in 11 games and had one extra-base hit - a home run - while striking out 11 times and walking twice (once intentionally) in 42 plate appearances with the Gwinnett County Braves. He'd been slumping badly for a couple years, and one point, a Phillies columnist begged him to hang up the cleats for good. Throughout his career, Howard has blasted 382 home runs and drove in 1,194 runs at the major league level.
Howard has appeared in the three All-Star games (2006, 2009, 2010) and won the Rookie of the Year award in 2005 followed by the National League MVP in his sophomore season in 2006.