Manny Being Gone

Bill Simmons wrote an excellent column on ESPN about Manny’s last days in Boston and everything surrounding it. It really is an excellent, fascinating piece that will undoubtedly be bashed on Deadspin and places like it.

I have always been Manny’s biggest defender. I love Manny. I love his quirkiness, I love his hitting, I love his fielding miscues. I always thought there was some sort of mystical connection between Manny and the old-school ballplayers. If Manny had been white, he could have played in the Deadball Era and we’d be reading apocryphal stories about him hitting two home runs and then fishing in a gutter after the game or stealing his manager’s pants on a train ride. He always got a bum wrap in Boston because he didn’t talk to the media and he wasn’t white, the first reason being more important than the second. The Boston sports media has proved generation after generation that it is capable of not recognizing greatness when the greatness is packaged differently. A white guy (Ted Williams), a black guy (Jim Rice) and now a Dominican, all great hitters, all skewered by the Boston media because of their personalities. And of course, now the Boston sports writers are the ones fighting to get Jim Ed into the Hall of Fame on shaky credentials. And 10 years from now, when Manny is being Manny at the Hall of Fame induction ceremony, everyone will suddenly remember how great he was, how fun he was to be around, and how cool it was to watch him play ball every day. Maybe someday his number 24 will hang between the 9 and the 27 on the right field facade, and we’ll all be regaled with Manny Being Manny stories, as if nothing ever happened. I hope Manny doesn’t sign with the Yankees, but he probably will. And it will be worse because you know it was Sox management’s fault. Since they’ve begun to run this organizations like the Patriots, it’s a lot harder to love them.

Anyways, read the whole article. It’s funny, bittersweet, sad, etc. It really makes you wonder.

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2 Responses to “Manny Being Gone”

  1. wtgreenmonster Says:

    the loss of manny ramirez from boston saddened many in red sox nation. but, though he was a harmless goofball most of the time, he was a selfish baseball player. your point that his bad press was because of his race is misdirected at best. manny was given a pass on most of the stupid human tricks he performed. the bad press came when he was too selfish to pinch hit or run out ground balls.

  2. fieldingmellish Says:

    I don’t mean to suggest his treatment was entirely because of his race, but I think there are many people who see a Dominican player not run out a ground ball differently than they see a white guy not run out a ground ball. The only real point is there are two sides to this story and I’ve personally heard a lot more of the “oh, he was a cancer” story than the “it didn’t have to happen this way” story.

    Thanks for your comment, by the way. It’s my first ever.

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