**Thursday, July 31, 2008 - ** The Boston Red Sox got rid of their problem child, Manny Ramirez today, sending him to the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers sent a few players to the Pittsburgh Pirates, and the Pirates sent Jason Bay to the Red Sox.
In reading all the sports blogs and message boards, reaction is mixed. Many people are upset that Manny is gone, and think the Red Sox treated him badly.
For my own part, Manny should have been benched and his salary docked. Unfortunately, the owners can’t punish players in that fashion. Players sign huge contracts…and if they don’t perform, either because their skills fall off, or because they just decide not to play very well, there is nothing the owner can do about… except unload the cancer to another team… and subsidize his salary while he plays for another team.
That’s the case with Manny Ramirez. It was not enough for Ramirez to hold himself out of three straight games with a “knee injury,” but when he was actually in the game, he also let his teammates down by tanking.
One time he was sent in to pitch hit in the ninth inning. The last chance his team had to tie or win a game they would otherwise lose. He looked at three straight pitches, not bothering to take the bat off his shoulder.
On a couple of occasions he messed up in the outfield, and that fact never seemed to weigh unduly on his shoulders.
Then of course there was his standard practice when it came to his homeruns. He would never learn his lesson…standing and posing and admiring the ball… except if it didn’t go out of the park it turned what should have been a double into a single and made him look like a fool. (He and Barry Bonds shared this little flaw.)
Jason Bay will likely be happy in Boston, and one hopes the fans won’t give him a hard time if he gets off to a slow start.
It’s Manny Ramirez who is to blame for this little fiasco…forcing the Red Sox to trade him and get the bare minimum for him.
I hope he tanks in Los Angeles!