>The Common Sportsman: Un-Manny

>A few days ago, The Common Man kinda, sorta defended Manny Ramirez, but not really. One pundit was calling Manny out for actively trying to sabatoge his team and, while The Common Man had heard about Manny’s lackadaisical attitude and questionable motivation in the past, he was certain that Manny’s accomplishments earned him the benefit of the doubt.

Apparently, however, so does Manny. According to the dean of baseball journalism, Peter Gammons, “Manny clearly has decided that he has already fulfilled his obligation to the first eight-year [$160 million] contract, and wants the next $100M right now.” Gammons argues that Ramirez’s “trying to opt out in the middle of his contract during the season,” by “blackmail” -ing the Red Sox into giving him an extension or trading him to a team that will. Now, when Joe Sportsguy claims on the radio that Manny is tanking on purpose, it’s one thing. But when Peter Gammons puts his sizeable reputation on the line to outline the ways in which Manny has “bag[ged] it,” The Common Man pays attention. It’s not that The Common Man was wrong, per se (because The Common Man is never wrong). It’s that The Common Man did not fully appreciate the levels to which Manny would sink and sulk to get his payday, making clear “his disdain for the game, for winning and for any form of authority.”

And so, this is where The Common Man gets off the Manny bandwagon. What he could once dismiss as quirky, kooky,and playful, The Common Man now sees as symptoms of Manny doing whatever he could get away with because he was Manny Ramirez, and the Red Sox needed the thunder in his lumber. The Common Man calls you out, Man-Ram. Calls you out for your unwillingness to hustle and try your hardest, your cowardly refusal to face tough pitchers, and your mercenary attitude toward the game and the fans. Manny Ramirez, you ain’t no kind of man at all. Your manhood is hereby revoked.