Siberian Baseball

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Did Manny really beg to stay?

It's a ritual of the summer that even the least observant baseball fans can't help but notice.

Fourth of July fireworks, sales on grills and charcoal and Manny Ramirez publicly expressing his displeasure with team management. To be honest, I was a little shocked that the Red Sox actually traded the guy this time around - that's not how this little dance was supposed to go.

Don't get me wrong, I think it was a solid decision at the core and Jason Bay showing up to play every game has to even the scales out versus Ramirez deciding when he wants to play and when he wants to sit by using excuses not seen since grammar school with a geography quiz looming.

I read this week that in the last go-round, where Ramirez sat in Seattle, he would have been fine, except he couldn't remember which knee he claimed to have injured.

Rookie mistake.

I just wanted to point everyone over to this strange little article from (link via Deadspin) that claims Ramirez had his agent contact the Red Sox at the last minute to try and nix the trade. Once the team option had been dropped - making Ramirez an unrestricted free agent this offseason - he had hoped to return to the Red Sox with those conditions in place.

Here's where Sawx fans are free to get angry:

If the Sox dropped the option years on his contract - which they had agreed to do if they traded him - Boras said Ramírez would not be a problem the rest of the season.

Other tidbits of note:

* This quote from Theo Epstein, which is notable because of the use of past tense in describing Ramirez's career. Not his career in Boston, his career. I could be wrong, but he doesn't seem to draw the distinction:

"[Ramírez] had a remarkable run here," Epstein said after asserting he would not engage in finger-pointing at one player. "His whole career was remarkable. He is one of the best righthanded hitters in history, and no one can ever take that away from him."

* David Ortiz is not happy with the move. Definitely worth keeping an eye on this, especially if the lineup can't find a way to protect him without another power hitter batting behind him.

* John Henry was in the "Keep Manny, he's too good a player" camp, but ultimately chose to trust the team that brought two championships to Boston.

* Jason Varitek being a good soldier and talking about closure and the need for the team to move on.

(Image taken for Siberian Baseball)



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