What Have I/We Done to Deserve This?

"They haven’t asked me for anything," Ramirez told ESPNdeportes.com’s Enrique Rojas on the phone from Fenway Park before the Red Sox-Angels matchup on Wednesday night.

"The Red Sox don’t deserve a player like me," Ramirez said. "During my years here I’ve seen how they [the Red Sox]have mistreated other great players when they didn’t want them to try to turn the fans against them.

"The Red Sox did the same with guys like Nomar Garciaparra and Pedro Martinez, and now they do the same with me. Their goal is to paint me as the bad guy," Ramirez added. "I love Boston fans, but the Red Sox don’t deserve me. I’m not talking about money. Mental peace has no price and I don’t have peace here."

I won’t pretend to be naive about the Mannynanigans™, but as YF said in a thread a few days ago there is something of a compact between the fans and players, and once that compact is broken the player is finished in the minds of those fans.  For all of Manny’s supposedly detrimental actions these past several years (some were more disrespectful than others, depending on your perspective, some were overblown, and some were repellent), this comment seems to be not just a salvo sent towards the front office, but a severance of his connection to the fans.   Manny should know that Sox fans are a complicated bunch by now, that we aren’t ignorant of the business side of baseball, and that citing Pedro and Nomar as examples of how poorly the team treats its own isn’t going to get very far.  In fact, quite the opposite.  With this comment, Manny is isolating himself from the contingent of fans who would go to the mat defending his actions, the diehards who tolerate the machinations of a prima donna because he rakes.  With this comment, even those fans (I am not one of them) may loosen the rope and be happy to see the ship sail.

God knows what happens if the ship doesn’t sail, though.

39 comments… add one
  • As bad as things have gotten, I still wouldn’t be surprised if this thing were salvaged and Manny stayed in Boston and – not only that – hit great the rest of the year, which I think would bring even disenchanted sfs back to his corner. The crazy thing with him is that despite rumblings, discontent, etc., it seems that if he just decides to play again, he immediately goes right back to his awesome level of offensive performance. And when he does, sfs have proven very ready to look the other way on all sorts of misbehavior – both minor and repellant (like most other fans would with a similar misfit production-machine on teir team).
    I get that the degree of break between he and the team and even fans is deeper and greater than in all the previous years of him voicing discontent, being placed on waivers, shopped around, etc, but like a goldfish who forgets anything it saw more than 10 seconds ago, Manny seems capable of just switching right back to mega-bat if and when a deal doesn’t get made.

    IronHorse (yf) July 31, 2008, 10:05 am
  • Mannynanigans™
    where has this word been hiding? brilliant.

    Yankee Fan In Boston July 31, 2008, 10:06 am
  • There is no returning from this quote. He can’t back out and play the stupid guy, or say he didn’t understand the english translation, or any other BS.
    This is how I KNOW this deal gets done today.
    Goodbye, Manny. Thanks for all those HR. This fan will NOT miss you one little bit.

    Brad July 31, 2008, 10:09 am
  • As soon as this deal is done, the Red Sox should announce Dwight Evans day, and retire the jersey forever. Hold a ceremony. Give him a car. Praise him to no end.
    Dwight Evans day. Any takers? I find it absolutely fitting, and hilarious.

    Brad July 31, 2008, 10:12 am
  • the herald says the deal is “less than 50/50” as of 5 minutes ago.

    Yankee Fan In Boston July 31, 2008, 10:14 am
  • I’m not buying it – esp from the Herald who got their arses kicked all last night on this stuff.
    I’m officially going on the record, and results be damned. Manny is gone.

    Brad July 31, 2008, 10:16 am
  • Most.Unproductive.Day.Ever.

    Brad July 31, 2008, 10:16 am
  • i agree, brad. this is getting done.
    if i were the marlins or pirates, i’d be feeding the herald “inside information” saying that it could fall apart, too. this could definitely be bogus, but i enjoy going along for the ride.

    Yankee Fan In Boston July 31, 2008, 10:22 am
  • Any truth to the rumor that the Sox are looking to trade Manny to LA for Nomar, straight up? Just curious. ;)

    MrBlackthorne July 31, 2008, 10:24 am
  • I want it done, but I don’t see it happening.

    LocklandSF July 31, 2008, 10:25 am
  • stark also uses “50/50.”

    Yankee Fan In Boston July 31, 2008, 10:25 am
  • Added an actual trade-specific post up top, so we can try to separate the trade news from the actual comments of Manny.
    I agree with SF that these comments cross a line. And I have a hard time buying that they treated Pedro so badly on his way out the door. Or is it back to the whole being “disrespectful” if you don’t exercise an option two years before it needs to be exercised?

    Paul SF July 31, 2008, 10:28 am
  • It is always hard for a player and team to separate, whether it is in-season or out-of-season. Or, it is hard for highly paid superstars with huge egos to foresee rejection, and in many ways there is a kind of pre-emption of that rejection in these actions. Pedro may have truly felt “disrespected”, I have no doubt he is proud. Manny may sincerely feel unwanted (after all, the Sox did place him on irrevocable waivers some time ago, right?), even though the team that doesn’t want him signed him to a $140M contract. I see these sagas as pretty predictable, they happen in businesses other than just sports. Plenty of high-profile CEOs are pushed out against their desires and in violation of their egos, not all go quietly. And some resign their positions or sleepwalk through their job knowing the noose is being tightened.
    Look, even the Bernie Williams situation got somewhat strained, and Bernie was one of the classiest players out there. Even a guy as genteel and quiet as Bernie got pissed off, had a feeling of rejection and anger at his (completely justifiable) treatment by his former team.
    Rejection isn’t an easy pill to swallow, no matter how much cash you get to take the medicine.

    SF July 31, 2008, 10:42 am
  • And the Curse of the Manny may soon begin….You pay a guy 20 million a year, he helps, indeed is key, in delivering 2 World Series titles, and you can’t keep him happy. You don’t have fifty tickets or whatever it is he wants–plus twenty five just to be safe–for every game at Yankee Stadium delivered to him on a gold cushion. Francona can’t hint to Youk, who can probably take a hint, that after striking out why doesn’t he throw a temper tantrum away from the clean-up hitter on the team. Etc. Etc…As prima donnas go Manny is an easy case to finesse. Not making him very, very content is lack of leadership and common sense. Trade him: Bambino 2. Keep him for three years, one or two more titles. Here’s hoping Henry who seems to understand this, sticks to his guns. Otherwise, especially all the simpering fans, you deserve what you’re going to not get.

    bob July 31, 2008, 10:44 am
  • Not making him very, very content is lack of leadership and common sense. Trade him: Bambino 2
    These may be the two most nonsensical sentences ever posted at YFSF.

    Paul SF July 31, 2008, 10:48 am
  • And I agree with Manny.
    The Red Sox don’t deserve a player like you. The fans don’t deserve a player like this.
    Your entire career you’ve gotten every dime they promised you, they’ve bent over backwards to appease you, they’ve put up with your “manny being manny” crapfest, they’ve (we) have cheered heartily when you decided to come back from bogus days off when they needed you. Teammates have stood up for you when they should not have. They’ve looked the other way when you flopped around in the outfied on a lazy fly ball, or when you played balls on the hop that my sister could have gotten to.
    You’re right. Boston doesn’t deserve you.

    Brad July 31, 2008, 10:53 am
  • Um, yeah
    We should prob expect the posts to go this way from the LoHud mainstays who come over to start fires. That is, until Bay starts raking, the Red Sox catch fire, and there is nothing more to talk about.

    Brad July 31, 2008, 10:56 am
  • “Otherwise, especially all the simpering fans, you deserve what you’re going to not get.”
    I love Manny Ramirez. I love all the stupid stuff he does. I hate his attitude right now and, quite frankly, he’s 36. He isn’t motivated to play in Boston and those two factors make him expendable. Nobody is going to come in and replace his peak production, but a guy like Jason Bay can surpass his current production and do so without whining about how unfairly he’s been treated.
    Unfair? Get real! The Sox ponied up 20 million dollars a year, put Manny on one of the country’s biggest stages, made him part of two World Series Championships, and helped cement his legacy as a HoFer. Within reason, what more could be possible want?

    Beau July 31, 2008, 10:58 am
  • I am said to see Manny go, of course, I’m also usually worried someone offending him, and he going out on one of his tantrums.
    For those worried about Ortiz – his production really didn’t diminish in ’06 when Manny’s knee was hurting for the last half. At some point, there has to be a realization that they need to part ways (by all the fans), and if they can get something that will help the team right now (instead of draft picks), more power to them.
    Manny is actually being booed now, which never happened before. Of course, a game winning homer (he’s only had one I think – in the ALDS last year) will bring cheers.
    I cheer for the Sox, root for the players, but to me it really doesn’t matter who is wearing the uniform, its the team I root for. Of course, there are some that I find don’t like as players, but I still want them to do well. I get frustrated with decisions, players and manager decisions, but in the end I support the team, because, well, I’ve been doing it for 30+ years.

    dw (sf) July 31, 2008, 11:08 am
  • Theo should put him on Ebay.

    Brad July 31, 2008, 11:08 am
  • Manny ebaying Manny!

    Atheose July 31, 2008, 11:15 am
  • “Theo should put him on Ebay.”
    Dammit! That would have been a great post idea and image.

    Nick-YF July 31, 2008, 11:19 am
  • “…Rejection isn’t an easy pill to swallow…” sf
    i guess that’s the point sf…you answered my question about stars feeling disrespected when it’s time to leave [nomar, pedro, bernie]…that’s why i’d like to know what the FO’s role has been in letting things fester so badly…this didn’t come on overnight…i bet it’s been brewing…i remember the beating we yf’s took from you guys about the clumsy handling of torre’s goodbye, less so with bernie, but your FO may have a little dirt on their hands too, or the criticism of the yankees was extreme and unfair…you can’t have it both ways…i’d like to know more about it…
    “…Or is it back to the whole being “disrespectful” if you don’t exercise an option two years before it needs to be exercised?…” paul
    paul, i don’t think he’s looking for them to exercise the 2 options they have…rather, he’d reportedly like them to give him a new 4 yr deal for 100m….not such an unusual request these days…while in this case the options belong to the team, there is a precedent for players using their options to end a contract and ask for a new one [see arod and drew]…

    dc July 31, 2008, 11:50 am
  • God knows what happens if the ship doesn’t sail, though.
    Well then I must be a god, because I know exactly what will happen — namely, the same thing that has happened every other time there has been an effort by Manny to get traded by Boston:
    Manny shrugs, and continues to hit a ton in Fenway… contributing mightily to the Sox’s success.
    That’s the upside of “Manny being Manny.” He can be a flake, but he also can shrug off the stuff that makes other players fester, and just keep hitting.
    Hitting is something he enjoys — and failing to produce for the remainder of the year would not improve his prospects of landing one more big contract at his age.

    Hudson July 31, 2008, 11:50 am
  • I agree with Hudson, or God as he is known. Basically, if this deal doesn’t happen, I think the Sox and Manny do their business and then move on at the end of 2016.

    Nick-YF July 31, 2008, 11:52 am
  • “they’ve bent over backwards to appease you, they’ve put up with your ‘manny being manny’ crapfest, they’ve (we) have cheered heartily when you decided to come back from bogus days off when they needed you. Teammates have stood up for you when they should not have. They’ve looked the other way when you flopped around in the outfied on a lazy fly ball, or when you played balls on the hop that my sister could have gotten to”
    Not trying to pour salt in the wound Brad, but I kind of feel like these are exactly the reasons that the Sox and their fans do deserve this Manny. He’s a logical extension of the old Manny who was defended, justified, and cheered despite all of the above.

    IronHorse (yf) July 31, 2008, 11:58 am
  • IH, just to defend Brad here–he most certainly never defended Manny–even during the good days–and this is not to say I agree or disagree with your premise about deservedness. I will say that I tend to think a fanbase is not a monolith, and thus it’s hard to ever truly limn its moral nature because it is not one it.

    Nick-YF July 31, 2008, 12:00 pm
  • that’s why i’d like to know what the FO’s role has been in letting things fester so badly
    What “role”? Manny signed a deal with two club options. The club is under no obligation to exercise these options before they have or want to. I don’t see what the Sox owe Manny, or what the front office has done wrong here. Certainly we can’t comment on things we don’t know about, like whether the Sox told Manny they would guarantee an option under certain circumstances or otherwise (but really, this would make no sense at all, this team doesn’t seem to have any record of this kind of practice and wasn’t about to start with a player like Manny). I don’t see why this becomes a “hey, your Front Office really helped botch this!” situation. It seems pretty simple: Manny is an egomaniac. He’s greedy. He’s proud. He (apparently) wouldn’t mind playing somewhere else. The Sox owe him nothing but what they owe him. They have put up with stuff for a while, and now are trying, apparently, to deal with the situation. Anyone who thinks that the Sox should have done more personality management on this one are being unrealistic. “Personality management”, in this case, would have been “guarantee a $20M option”, and even THAT may not have satisfied Manny or his agent.
    I don’t understand a “blame the victim” scenario here. There is NO victim. The Sox are not victims, since they entered into an agreement with a personality, and now the personality is exercising his personality, for the umpteenth time. The front office isn’t to blame, the front office can’t be so naive as to think that this was an unpredictable situation. At the same time, Manny can say what he wants, however stupid. But he’s the one talking, not the front office. And Manny can laze through games if he ends up sticking with the team, but that’s a situation that will end with Manny suspended and devalued going into free agency. I don’t think it’s worth placing “blame” on anyone right now (and most certainly not on the front office), the situation seems to be pretty clear. Expensive, unhappy player, fed-up front office with options, some of course unpalatable.

    SF July 31, 2008, 12:02 pm
  • Fair enough Nick – sorry sfs if my comment was too much of a broad-brush. I’ve had too many conversations with SFs over the years who have taken a Manny can do no wrong attitude toward my criticisms of him and I am reacting out of that more than anything else.
    I am trying to think of other star athletes who have clearly dogged it during games in order to demonstrate their dissatisfaction. For some reason only Kobe comes to mind, though there must be many others. It is something that makes fans lose respect permanently for those athletes even when they are superb talents, as are both Kobe and Manny.

    IronHorse (yf) July 31, 2008, 12:13 pm
  • “But he’s the one talking, not the front office.”
    Manny disagrees. Isn’t that one of Manny’s major issues with the front office, that he feels they are talking about him, even if that talking is getting done through proxies.

    Nick-YF July 31, 2008, 12:20 pm
  • well, that’s a good response sf, but you seem to be avoiding the main point…the yanks, who also had “options”, took a beating from you guys for their “botching” of the torre goodbye, and to a lesser degree, the bernie goodbye…that makes your FO fair game because you can’t have it both ways…torre and bernie got “too expensive”, just like manny, but you were all too quick to jump all over the yankee FO for their insensitive handling of it…is it possible that something was done or said by someone in the FO that sent manny off the deep end?…it’s a fair question i’m asking, and it’s way too convenient to chalk it up to manny’s just being greedy and childish…uh, why didn’t the same guys who grew tired of his antics not anticipate he’d react poorly to feeling unwanted?…the indignance over his response is surprising really…but, like with torre, it doesn’t look like manny saw it coming, and it’s just possible that the sox FO is as out of touch as you guys thought the yank FO was…

    dc July 31, 2008, 12:28 pm
  • Nick, I want to applaud your use of “limn” at 12:00pm.
    dc, you’re not actually presenting an argument that the Sox front office has done something wrong; you’re just kind of wishing they did to make up karmically for previous things that upset you in Yankeeland.

    stuck working July 31, 2008, 12:33 pm
  • The idea of obtaining Ramirez was driven by owner Jeffrey Loria, who is trying to return his team to the playoffs for the first time since 2003, when the Marlins won the World Series.
    “Jeffrey is an art dealer. Jeffrey has always collected the world’s greatest art pieces. In the game of baseball, Manny is a Picasso,” said another baseball source with knowledge of the deal. “It doesn’t surprise me. Hey, nobody thought Jeffrey would get Pudge (Rodriguez) years ago and, sure enough, he did.

    LocklandSF July 31, 2008, 12:34 pm
  • Manny is Picasso? Is this his Blue Period? I dunno — seems to me he’s got more Van Gogh in him.

    stuck working July 31, 2008, 12:37 pm
  • And what does that make Arthur Rhodes? Georges Braque?

    stuck working July 31, 2008, 12:39 pm
  • For the record, I don’t think the Yankees did anything wrong with Bernie, in the slightest.
    Torre is a different situation. He was out of a contract and was a free agent. He was always a good citizen. So their offer to him was transparently insulting. And then Hank spouted off about “his Dad” and all that BS. That was very ugly, in my opinion. It was handled very poorly by management, who, once they gave him the offer and he walked, should have kept their mouths shut, just for dignity’s sake. Torre started talking, and they could have let him state his position and remained silent, and they would have looked better for it.
    I think Nick is correct, Manny’s perception is that the FO is bad-mouthing him through leaks, etc., and that’s a legitimate criticism that I didn’t factor in and should have. So to that end, the Front Office does hold some responsibilty. But they still don’t owe Manny anything as far as I am concerned, at least from a financial or contractual standpoint, and it is foolish for Manny to think otherwise.

    SF July 31, 2008, 12:44 pm
  • Hmm. Manny as Picasso.
    There’s a post in here somewhere…

    SF July 31, 2008, 12:46 pm
  • sw, when i said “…is it possible that something was done or said by someone in the FO that sent manny off the deep end?…”, i was acknowledging that i didn’t have any evidence of FO mishandling…all we have to go on is manny feeling disrespected, the FO scrambling to trade him, fans rationalizing that his leaving will be good for the team, and no comment from sox brass…hmm that seems like fertile ground for some speculation in my book…the only thing that “upsets” [your word] me is the irony of some sox fans criticizing the yankee FO for knowing when it’s time to part ways with an icon, but not recognizing that their own FO may not be in touch with how to say goodbye to an icon: nomar, pedro, manny…or they were all greedy and selfish, and neither FO is good at character assessment… ;)

    dc July 31, 2008, 12:50 pm
  • “…So to that end, the Front Office does hold some responsibilty….”
    thanks sf, that’s all i was looking for…until now, this has been portrayed as all manny’s fault…
    also, i agree with you that the sox owe manny nothing…but in his mind, he’s at the end of his contract…the sox don’t have to exercise his option…to apply your argument to the yanks/torre, as with manny, the yankees owed torre nothing…as you said, he was at the end of a contract, for which he was generously compensated by the way…hank shooting off his mouth was unfortunate and embarrassing, but as you say, it’s not unlike what manny is accusing the sox FO of doing…

    dc July 31, 2008, 12:59 pm

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