Sometimes, my follow-ups to long winded blog posts about mildly serious topics happen to write themselves.
On ESPN.com yesterday, there was a telling quote from Tim McCarver, one of the most known sportscasters in history and a total, unflinching baffoon with cinnamon hair. Here was his take on Manny Ramirez, possible National League MVP, the driving force behind the Dodgers winning their first postseason series in 20 years, the man who provoked a 19-8 record down the stretch just to make the playoffs:
“Some of the things he did were simply despicable, despicable — like not playing, refusing to play. Forgetting what knee to limp on. And now it’s washed, it’s gone.””
I admit that what Manny did in Boston was childish–dogging it down first base, asking out of the lineup with a phantom knee injury, ignorning the media. But despicable, a word defined as “so worthless or obnoxious as to rouse moral indignation”?
Dick Cheney’s despicable. Stephon Marbury’s despicable. Tony Yayo’s despicable.
Manny Ramirez is pouty.
How many grandslams does this ass clown have?
ESPN.com sons Timmy Mac in the same article, noting, “in his last month with Boston, Ramirez hit .347 with a .473 on-base percentage.” To the Red Sox, Boston media, and national media, Manny playing at a HOF level is obnoxious because he didn’t run out a ground ball. But wait–Tim’s got more jewels for dat ass.
“It’s a wonderful story in many, many ways, and from Boston’s standpoint, it’s a horrible story, I would imagine, because he could be doing that for Boston.”
Boston knew when they signed Manny seven years ago he wasn’t playing with a full deck. The term “Manny being Manny” was coined to explain his aloof behavior. But you’re not paying the guy to be a deacon. It truly didn’t seem that despicable when Manny was making 7 All-Star Teams, winning 6 Silver Slugger Awards, hitting 38 postseason homeruns in Beantown, and winning 2 titles in 3 years with an World Series MVP trophy in ’04 to boot. But since he doesn’t scoot down the bases like David Eckstein, he’s the scourge of today’s sports. Because his organization didn’t reprimand him for bad behavior and essentially fed him publicly to the wolves for two months, he’s worthless. The man has never used steroids, beat/killed/“touched up” his wife, lied to Congress, retired then unretired, assaulted a fan, dished out a Cleveland Steamer, nor peed in my grandmom’s pool. You’d think he’d get some slack.
The guy most offended by Chuck D’s views on Elivs
I’d be more offended if a short, “Rudy”-like scrappy team guy dogged it because he’s 4 bad at-bats away from playing with 22 year olds in Port St. Lucy. Amazingly, it seems like no white player has ever dogged it, or at least been widely criticized by the media two months later for it.
Baseball is a loooong season starting in late March and ending in late October. No one plays hard all the time. Ask the reigning NL MVP Jimmy Rollins, whose been called out twice this season by his manager for lack of effort. Sure, J-Roll steals bases, slides headfirst, dives for groundballs. Like Chase Utley, he is supremely talented and appears to be a Gamer. He also pouts, takes plays off, and yells at his manager behind closed doors. He insulted the Phillies fans by mislabling them “front runners” and indicted more than once on the day he signed his contract extension a few years ago that someday he’d like to play near his home on the West Coast. Maybe if had some unkept dreadlocks, he too would get shot with Integrity Missiles from Timmy Mac.
“Every sport, there have been people who have held organizations hostage, whether it be Terrell Owens or Randy Moss or Manny Ramirez,” McCarver said.
What about Cal Ripken, Roger Clemens, and Brett Favre?
Cal Ripken handcufed the Baltimore Orioles for years when his skills badly decreased and he refused to come out a game in fear of ending his “Iron Man Streak.” If his name was Calvin Washington, he’d be “selfish” and “all about his own stats.”
Roger Clemens burned the Boston Red Sox, Toronto Blue Jays, New York Yankees and the Houston Astros by forcing trades, retiring, unretiring, and using steroids to dominate hitters well into his 40s. He then lied to 60 Minutes, lied to Congress, then pushed his wife in front of legal bullets to deflect those HGH dum dums. If his name was Roger Martinez, he’d be hung at high noon.
Brett Favre–do I even need to start this? He’s a warrior, folks. Simple and plain. Plays hard. Sticks to his word. Loves ’em some Wrangler jeans. Gracefully handed over Cameron Diaz to Ben Stiller in that hair cum movie. Doesn’t even wipe his ass just to do his part in cutting back on waste. So maybe Brett Favre isn’t a great example after all. Brett Hodgson’s got some ‘splaining to do.
Chipper Jones: not just a name, but a state of mind
Did you know Braves thirdbaseman Chipper Jones cheated on his wife with a waitress from Hooter’s for almost a year in 1996? He also knocked her up. He and his wife then divorced,. Chipper waited 11 months to see his new child. And yet I had NEVER heard about this story before until I read it in last month’s GQ. It turns out Ol’ Chipenstein was quite a cocky, flashy, inconsiderate asshole from the gate. Drafted 1st overall in 1990, he drove a brand new sports car, wore jewelry, and talked in the third person. Veterans hated him and management got in his ass. Somehow, someway, this was all brand new information to me, even though during this time period baseball was the central vocation of my life. I watched Sportscenter everyday, bought USA Today’s Baseball Weekly consistently, watched games, collected autographs…and the media failed in exploring the vile creep that was Larry Wayne Jones some time ago.
It’s easy to badger Ramirez, a Hispanic with a thick accent, nappy dreads, and $100 mill in the bank when he disrespects the “integrity” of the game, whatever the hell that is. But it’s an extreme overreaction when Manny’s booed lustily when playing anyhwhere but New York or Boston because 50,000+ people are buying into what bigots like Tim McCarver, Joe Buck, Boston beat writers, etc are peddling. It’s ugly, saddening and really unecessary; it’ll no doubt continue as long as Ramirez is smacking the snot out of the ball, whether in Los Angeles or elsewhere.
Money over broads you got it, f*ck bush.
Are people just spewing venom at Manny because they can’t give it to Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire and Rafeal Palmeiro? Are THAT many people genuinely insulted at Manny’s baseball “sins” they’ll never forgive him? Or do people look forward to really sticking it to minorities wrongly perceived as disrespectful, beligerent, defiant, and threatening all the while having a short term memory when whiter folks do more digusting crap?
Let me know what you think.
And Dodgers in 7!!!