Manny, Manny Questions

1. If the Sox trade or are thinking of trading Manny for prospects, major league talent, or some combination thereof, are they being stupid?

2. If the Sox don’t trade Manny, and put up with his (supposed) antics to get his production, are they going "soft" on a guy who can’t be trusted, or creating trouble for the clubhouse?

3. If the answer to (1) is "yes", then can the answer to (2) also be "yes"?

4. If the answer to (1) is "yes", and the answer to (2) is "yes", then how can the Sox do anything right?

11 comments… add one
  • Ah, so they lose either way. It seems that awy though, as there’s almost no way you can replace Manny’s bat without forking over an arm and a leg. Would’ve been nice to see the Manny-Ortiz-Drew lineup..

    Lar November 29, 2006, 12:56 pm
    They end up with solid bullpen AND a Vernon Wells/Andruw Jones type.
    I still hate that, but that’s the only thing that will allow me to stomach it.

    LocklandSF November 29, 2006, 1:05 pm
  • Steve Lombardi, over on WasWatching, with some excellent reason why every YF should be rooting for a change of scenery for Mr. Ramirez:

    YF November 29, 2006, 1:43 pm
  • More questions:
    1) What if Manny’s knee is in bad shape, getting worse? Wouldn’t it follow that he will be a lesser hitter? What’s worse, a hurt Manny who can only play 110 games at a big contract number or lesser hitters and future talent, money back in the pocket?
    2) What happens if the Sox hold on to Manny, and he becomes aggrieved? What’s he worth on the market then, compared to now?
    The Sox can’t win here. But I refuse to hold the Sox hostage on this one. They signed Manny to help deliver a championship and sell tickets. He did just that. We know what happened to the Celtics when they refused to move Larry (and thank God for that), the Chief, or McHale, despite common sense telling everyone that one if not two of those players needed to be leveraged. That team still hasn’t really recovered, a decade and a half later. And though there’s a different structure in baseball, salary-wise, the Sox are in a terrible spot with Manny. They either trust that he’s healthy (which he might not be, fully), they trust that he will show up every day (which, until September of last year wasn’t really an issue but could be now), or they trust that they can keep the organization strong without him. There aren’t really any good answers, I don’t think. This may be a tougher pill to swallow for Theo than trading Nomar, because Nomar’s skills had eroded. There’s a chance that Manny’s dependability is eroding, but that’s a major unknown, and hence part of the problem.

    SF November 29, 2006, 1:53 pm
  • On top of all the other reasons to keep Manny, including his status as arguably the most reliable and potent hitter in the A.L. over the past decade, here’s another:
    Whatever happened to the idea of maintaining some sense of continuity in a team?
    Isn’t it worth something to have a team sense of self, rather than a collection of temporary personalities and other journeymen?
    Is there no value, in 5-7 years, in making Manny into a Sox institution when he retires to multiple standing ovations?
    Yeah, that’s sentimentalism, but when sentiment is wedded to incredible production such as Manny’s, it’s worth considering.
    And I’m sure the Sox could have gotten good value for Ted Williams, too… Maybe a solid hitter and a couple of great starting pitchers. Then they wouldn’t have had that bitter malcontent around, who didn’t get along with the fans and media.
    Would anyone have traded Williams?

    Hudson November 29, 2006, 1:58 pm
  • It is an assumption — and not a particularly sound one — to assume Manny will remain as dominant over the next “5-7” seasons as he was over the past six.
    The fact is: Either Manny was hurting through most of last season, so much so that he couldn’t play for the six weeks, and when he did play he stunk. He hasn’t gotten surgery this off-season, so rest may have made him healthier, or it may not have. We don’t know.
    Or Manny was faking the last six weeks, angry by a Joe Giuliotti scoring decision. Another such incident could occur at any moment. Or it might never happen again. Again, we don’t know.
    Also consider the Red Sox are unlikely to exercise their $20M options for 2009 and 2010, making 2008 his last season in Boston. Further considering the market is overvaluing sluggers to the tune of Manny’s salary for hitters who aren’t Manny, and trading him is certainly not “stupid” — ASSUMING again that you can get value back that can either be spun for similar production or solidify the team’s holes in the bullpen and infield long-term.
    In either case, you roll the dice. You don’t trade Manny, you could end up with two unproductive, injury/angst-filled years that not only hurt the team because you received nothing in return for him when you could have, but because it will affect what draft picks the team would receive when he leaves. Or you could end up with his 500th home run in a Boston uniform and another pair of 40-HR seasons.
    You trade him, you could end up with Andruw Jones, a deeper lineup, a solid bullpen and a World Series team composed of parts you couldn’t have gotten without trading Manny — and those parts are young and will likely be productive for longer than Manny will. Or you could end up with a gaping hole in your lineup that is inadequately filled by a parade of disappointments and costs the Sox a playoff spot.
    Which is the right thing to do? I can honestly say I have no idea.

    Paul SF November 29, 2006, 2:24 pm
  • Paul:
    Any player can get hurt. And pretty much all players’ production eventually drops off.
    My argument for Manny’s production is that (a) it has been as good or better than anyone’s over the past decade, and (b) it has been remarkably consistent.
    I’ll take a six-week blip from Manny over a player like Drew who has been getting injured every other year.
    Especially when that blip was preceded by one of the most blistering hitting performances against the Yankees in a five-game series ever (when the rest of his teammates rolled over and died).
    Considering what far more injury-prone players with lower numbers are being offered, Manny is a bargain.
    I will be both irate and disconsolate if he is traded. It would go down as one of the dumbest Sox moves since losing Fisk and Clemens.

    Hudson November 29, 2006, 2:45 pm
  • Nothing can match the Fisk debacle. Nothing. Trading Manny willingly after they’ve gotten a championship with him, and considering the market and player “foibles”, trading him and getting something solid in return, would hardly be a debacle.
    (As long as they trade him with the stipulation that he can’t be shipped to the Yankees afterwards, of course!)

    SF November 29, 2006, 3:00 pm
  • I read today about talks with San Diego for Peavy and perhaps Adiran Gonzalez. If thats the case I say Boston sends Manny, Lowell (SD wanted him at the deadline) and a prospect and 10 million for Peavy and Gonzalez, move youk back to 3B stick Gonzalez at 1st and we have a nice looking lineup of
    Lugo (assuming the offer we made yesterday attracts him)
    I have Pena 5th as opposed to Ortiz/Gonzalez/Drew to not have 3 strait leftys in the lineup.

    TJ November 29, 2006, 3:39 pm
  • This line in the Globe today was telling:
    ” … but [Ramirez] played little in the last six weeks, asked to be traded, and provoked the ire of club officials and teammates who felt he could have played despite a sore left knee.”
    This is the first time I’ve seen Edes give an attribution to this sentiment. He’s always said that questions existed, etc., but never actually linked those questions to officials and teammates, I don’t think. Interesting.

    Paul SF November 29, 2006, 4:23 pm
  • …i’m surprised about the teammates being annoyed with him…we’ve discussed that a few times, and you guys convinced me that it just wasn’t true…frankly i tend to believe you rather than edes…he seems to like to stir the pot…

    dc November 30, 2006, 8:44 am

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