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May 26, 2014

In Ex-RedSox News

Filed under: Baseball — Tags: , , , , , , , — Willis @ 10:00 am

Manny Being MannyManny “ManRam” Ramirez  was signed to a minor league contract to be a player-coach at Triple-A Iowa by The Chicago Cubs and their President of Baseball Operations Theo Epstein, who was with Ramirez for seven years in the Boston. So now he can teach all the young new players how to just be Manny being Manny.

“While Manny is not and will not be a fit on the Cubs major league roster, we do think at this stage of his life he’s a nice fit as a mentor for some of the young talented hitters we have in the organization. Manny will coach full-time and play part-time in a limited role that does not take at-bats away from our prospects. If he shows there is still some magic in his bat, perhaps he will find his way to the major leagues and help another team, but that is not why he is here. We are thrilled that he wants to work with our young hitters and make a difference.”

Pedro Martinez was one of the best pitchers the game have ever seen, and he takes a little time from his roll of “Special Assistant” (We all know that just means him and Kevin Millar are the Sox official party starters, and they are good at their job.) for the RedSox to discuss the art and science of pitching.

“Pitching is both [art and science] and you have to put them together. You have to study a lot. You have to study the movement of your pitches – the distance your pitches move compared to the swing paths of batters. You have to learn to read bat speed against the speed of a fastball. You can tell a slow bat or a long swing, or a short, quick swing. You counter those things. If a hitter has a slow swing, I don’t want to throw him anything soft. I want to go hard against slow. If he has a quick bat, I probably want to be soft more than I want to be hard. You have to be able to repeat your delivery and be deceiving at the same time.

And one final story, about beer and bats…

July 28, 2008

[Business Day One] Legacy

The Pyramids of Giza were massive symbols of power, constructed by tens of thousands of laborers over decades to memorialize the pharoahs and high officials of Ancient Egypt. They are still around today, due to their massive size and stunningly sturdy construction. Truly, the culture behind them put a lot of weight into being remembered. Every so often, I wish that a professional athlete would take after the rulers of the Old and Middle Kingdoms. That is, I’d love if a few of them gave a damn about their legacy.

The trials of Brett Favre and Manny Ramirez bang on, and every passing day reminds me how blessed I am to care about reputation when so many in the world clearly do not. ESPN is keeping Favre as front page news more or less non-stop, and today’s article by Chris Mortensen, though cultivated from a direct interview, makes the ol’ gunslinger sound like a whining teenager. Up in Boston, bellowing pundit Dan Shaughnessy puts up a headline that we were all thinking: “Slugger’s act has grown very tiresome.” Despite the fact that the boy from Kiln and the dreadlocked masher are both sharing the front page as malcontents, the path to this point for both of them has been so different.

Manny’s made a career out of bouncing between being an eccentric goofball on his good days and a team-sabotaging distraction machine on his worst. If he had a monument in Giza, it would be covered in hieroglyphs of him holding forged “home sick” notes, talking on cell phones in the middle of a game, or waving a sign that says TRADE ME. Conversely, Favre has spent the last decade and a half as a hard-throwing everyman; an imperfect and lovable soldier who played tough, played well and gave back to the community. His legacy as one of the game’s best was secured even before he threw his 421st touchdown or had a monster statistical season to (theoretically) end his career. His shrine would’ve been enscribed with Lambeau Leaps and cheering crowds, though now who can be sure. Over the past weeks, Ramirez has soldified his legacy and Favre threw his into doubt.

How both of these stories will end is anyone’s guess. Manny may stay in Boston until the winter and then sneak off to Shea. Favre may play just down the road in the Meadowlands. But regardless of what happens on the field, there will be thought about what happens off of it. Neither man will be kept out of their respective Halls of Fame for a career of buffoonery or just a few weeks worth, but the stories have been written and read, and people will remember this for a long, long time. Maybe not as long as the Pyramids have been standing. But longer than either would care to realize.

June 30, 2008

[Business Day One] Cousin Manny

Filed under: Baseball,Business Day One — Tags: , , , — Serpico @ 10:12 am

We all have that one cousin.  We talk about him on the carride to the family reunion, wondering if he’s going to insult your grandmother or puke in your aunt’s bathroom or say something unbelievably racist at a restaurant.  Any day that he behaves himself is a little victory and every so often, he’ll string enough good days together that you think he grew out of it.  But then he’ll barrel through a ten year old nephew during the family wiffleball game and you realize that he’s not going to change.

 

The city of Boston has a cousin like that too.  And his name is Manny Ramirez.  Sure, it’s better to have a self-absorbed idiot in the family than, say, a criminal.  But it’s just rough to have to keep rationalizing away his actions.  The most recent was a physical altercation with the team’s traveling secretary.  Allow me to sum up what happened: Manny asked for a high number of tickets (16) on the day of the game, and the traveling secretary said it might not be possible.  An argument started and the poor employee was shoved to the ground.  One closed door apology later and all is forgiven.  It is, of course, important to note that a similar player-on-office staff fracas happened resulted in a player being fired a week earlier.  Granted, that was a general manager that Shawn Chacon shoved instead of a humble traveling secretary, but violence in the workplace is still violence in the workplace.  Well, at least on paper.

 

This incident just reminds us that Cousin Manny can do whatever he wants to do while part of the family.  A few weeks earlier, he took a swing at Youkilis.  That’s two acts of physical aggression in the month of June.  And each is just washed away.  Washed away like every other bafflingly moronic thing that he’s done for the past ten years.  It’s not going to stop.  Fans and faithful have been aware of this for as long as he’s been in Boston.  But with violence in the equation now, it is very unfortunate that even that doesn’t give anyone pause.

 

If this was any other player on the Red Sox, he’d be suspended.  But it’s Cousin Manny.  And Cousin Manny can do whatever he wants, making a generally proud and decent organization a pack of hyprocrites.  But they’re not thinking too much about that, I suppose.  They’re probably too busy prying Manny’s butt out of the punch bowl again.

May 8, 2007

Make Him Stop

Filed under: Baseball — Tags: , , , — Willis @ 9:09 am

Don Orsillo can’t contain his laughter.


Manny pets Tavarez
Uploaded by bjs1234

EDIT: No Longer YouTube because MLB thinks they’re losing money… When I clearly sees TwinsBaseball.com and other ads showing. Also, I’m sad I missed this when it happened, and maybe I’ll watch tonights game hoping for more Don & Remy hyjinks. (Remember the pizza?). Update 5/22: Had to switch video sources again. The MLB Crackdown Team has extended their reach. I promise to use MLB.com or NESN.com hosted embedded video as soon as they have this clip available.

Update: I learned from Sox & Dawgs that Gordon Edes from the Boston Globe reported on why Manny was petting Julian. According to Edes, Julian was upset with Manny for not paying attention to the game. From what Julian said, when Julian is mad at Manny, Manny pets him to calm him down.

April 6, 2007

Manny being Merlot

When I first heard about Red Sox wines, I thought it must clearly be a joke of some kind. April Fool’s Day isn’t too far gone, after all, and wine and baseball are not two things I usually associate with each other. But a quick look at the site reveals that the wines – “Manny Being Merlot” included – are all being sold to benefit Red Sox ballplayers’ favorite charities. CaberKnucle

There are obviously a lot of jokes that come to mind, the first of which being that it must take a special, one-of-a-kind, flown-in-from-San-Diego sommelier to uncork the CaberKnuckle, lest the cork goes bouncing all over, and the bottle passes through his/her hands and goes flying, and it decreases the wine’s intended value. Mostly, though, I am thinking up of ways to expand their brand; there are a lot of good combinations out there. (more…)

March 22, 2007

Manny Grilling Manny

Filed under: Baseball — Tags: , , — Willis @ 1:20 pm

Manny Grilling

Manny Ramirez is just a regular dude who likes to buy $4000 grills and cook up a few burgers and dogs. But it turns out that Manny is too busy hitting homeruns and taking leaks in the green monster to use his grill more than once. So, we cut to Tuesday, when Manny decided to sell his grill on eBay (along with an autographed ball, because he’s Manny being Manny, and what the hell). Cool, someone gets a grill and a ball and Manny has room for another car in the garage.

Too bad the story doesn’t end there. (Notice I don’t link to the auction?) Some of the stupid fucks who thrive on ebay (no, not PayPal) bid the auction up to $99,999,999.99. Now all you can get are stupid “Manny’s Grill” t-shirts.

So this year, Manny, you get one free stupid mistake/comment. I won’t hold it against you (I’ll hold it against the stupid shits on eBay) and I won’t say anything bad about you. Once your second stupid mistake/comment happens though, it’s open season.

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