Friday, August 1, 2008

Thoughts on Mannywood

This isn't a news flash, not in today's instant media gratification world we live in. Manny is no longer wearing red, white and blue. He's now wearing just white and blue, LA Dodger blue to be exact.

My thoughts are mixed on this.

I understand why Manny was traded. He became a cancer in the clubhouse. His antics were no longer welcomed. He was a distraction during a time when the team needed to be focused on winning and catching up to the DRays and/or fending off the Yankees.

Additionally, Manny had all but given up on the team. The effort wasn't there. Why keep a guy on your team that's not willing to do what it takes to win - especially in the middle of a playoff hunt. Manny knows he's a talented player and knows that his shark of an agent - Scott Boras - would get him a big payday once free agency came calling at the end of the year.

My theory is that Manny has always hated Boston. He came here for the money. Once he really started to hate it, he started pulling these crazy antics to get himself shipped out of Boston. He tried in 2005 and it didn't work. He tried in 2006 and the Sox couldn't get the deal done. Don't forget the Manny for A-Rod deal that almost went through. The Sox just couldn't move him. He made too much money at the end of the day, the guy was still hitting HRs, driving in RBIs, etc. He was a part of the feared Ortiz/Manny combo. He was part of a line-up that was feared league wide, especially in NY (see Joe Torre's comments in today's Times about welcoming Manny to Mannywood).

I will miss that part of having Manny on the Sox - his bat. His presence in the line-up made us a better team. However, you just don't win championships with strong offense. You need great D (which Manny wasn't the best LF), you need great pitching (which Manny doesn't play a role in) and finally, you need chemistry among the guys in the clubhouse (which Manny apparently DIDN'T contribute to).

In the end, I know Jason Bay isn't a Manny Ramirez. I almost feel bad for him. He will be scrutinized and unfairly compared to Manny. I really hope the kid blows our socks off and has the best two month span of his career - so much so that we forget about the lunatic that stood out in left field.

So see ya later Manny. Thanks for the two rings. Thanks for the unbelievable appearances at the plate. Thanks for the fodder for the media. Thanks for keeping us entertained for the past eight years. Most of all, thanks for being Manny.

P.S. Say hello to I'm no longer a star Nomar Garciaparra and Derek I can't keep my hands off the booze and ladies (literally) Lowe.

 Manny goes deep to win it with a three-run walkoff


Anonymous said...

To be honest, Manny's reception here has been mixed. You would think that a player (hitter specifically) of his caliber would be welcomed with open arms and a parade from LAX to Chavez Ravine. But alas, even over here where the average fan arrives late and leaves early, we still know that with all his talent comes the sideshow. Plus, will he mesh with the crew we have here? I personally cant WAIT to see how Jeff Kent and him hit it off... stay tuned for that one.

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