Manny Post Script: The Signature of a Jerk

Manny Ramirez, the now-retired ex-baseball slugger, provoked the predictable responses from the media and fellow players in the wake of his sudden retirement after being notified that he would be the first major league player to face a 100 game suspension for failing a mandated PED test (that’s “performance enhancing drugs” for all of you who don’t know who Barry Bonds is), because no player had ever been caught TWICE before.

Everyone was in agreement that this meant:

  • Manny’s chances of getting elected to the Hall of Fame were about the same as mine.
  • Manny is an idiot (as if this has ever been in question for a nanosecond).
  • “Going by the numbers”, Manny was one of the greatest hitters of all time.

These assessments also mean that Manny’s cheating has, at least for the moment, obscured his jogging after base hits in the outfield that he would have caught if he had bothered to run; his going into  home-run trots on balls that he didn’t hit out of the park, causing him to get thrown out at second base; the times he refused to play because of imaginary injuries (the Red Sox once ordered x-rays to determine which knee was bothering him); his repeated demands to be traded, causing front offices to waste precious time and effort until he changed his mind, which he usually did; his attack on an elderly traveling secretary in 2008, and so many other instances of selfishness, arrogance, and contempt for the game. There was a reason why Ramirez, at his peak, was offered to any team willing to pay his salary, in exchange for nothing at all, and got no takers. “Numbers”  don’t make up for everything.

Yes, the fact that Manny Ramirez is a cheater has distracted everyone from that fact that he is also a jerk, utterly devoid of character. To Manny’s credit, his only statement to the media after his  demise serves to remind us of that most salient non-quality, which his fans usually covered up with the euphemistic phrase, “Manny being Manny.”

“I’m at ease,” Ramirez told via phone from his home in Miami. “God knows what’s best. I’m now an officially retired baseball player. I’ll be going away on a trip to Spain with my old man.”

Let’s translate that from Manny-speak, shall we?

  • “I’m at ease.”  “I don’t care.”
  • “God knows what’s best.”  “I accept no responsibility, as usual.”
  • I’m now an officially retired baseball player. ” They can’t do a thing to me. Ha ha!”
  • I’ll be going away on a trip to Spain with my old man.” “I’ve got enough money to swim in, and won’t have to work another day in my life.”

Meanwhile, he quit without telling his team, his coaches and his manager,  without a statement to the Tampa Bay fans, and without saying the one thing that any decent human being in his situation has an absolute obligation to say.

“I’m sorry.”


2 thoughts on “Manny Post Script: The Signature of a Jerk

  1. Let’s face it. Manny is an IQ 60, regardless of his baseball talent. Ignorant of his intellectual/moral/ethical obligations (because, of course, he’s an IQ 60), he just does what he wants. Why would you expect him EVER to “do the right thing?”

    What frosts me are the sportscasters who spent half an hour praising his baseball talent, how “fun” he was, what a “scream” he was in the dugout, and never, ever, mentioned the fact that he was an irresponsible asshole, start to finish in his career. I think you should call them on it: they didn’t act the same with Bonds, Clemens, etc. It’s worth a separate post, in my opinion. And I know, I know, others will say “it’s only baseball and not worth the time.” But it IS worth the time because (1) kids pay attention to the behavior of baseball players (contrast with Cal Ripken, e.g.); and (2) the news media, sports and otherwise, are completely unethical in the stories they choose to cover and the way they cover them. Go get ’em.

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