Tag: manny ramirez

[Business Day One] Legacy

No Comments

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.

[Business Day One] Cousin Manny

1 Comment

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.